Thursday, March 12, 2020

Three Ways to Wait Well

You will be restless in your waiting, until you surrender your will to God.
Are you in a season of waiting? Maybe you are waiting on:

  • *A child (positive pregnancy test or adoption)
  • *A new job
  • *Healing (illness, restoration of a relationship, or marriage)
  • *A spouse
  • *A loved one to come to Christ, or a wayward child to return home.
As humans we don't do waiting well. Why is that? Because we want what we want when we want it!

In the Bible (Genesis 15-18) we see Abraham and Sarah waited 25 years for the child the Lord had promised. The answer did not come until Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah, 99. By the world's standards, all hope seemed lost for them. During the waiting, Sarah let fear and doubt take hold and she took matters into her own hands by giving Abraham her maidservant, Hagar, so that Hagar might bear a child for them. Most of us are thinking, "HOLD ON! Stop! This is a bad idea." Yes, it was a bad idea, but how often do we try to step ahead of God and take control in situations in our life? We all may be a little more like Sarah than we thought.

God had promised Abraham that Sarah would be the "mother of nations." Genesis 17:16 tells us she would conceive and bear a son, but Sarah did not believe, so much so, that in Chapter 18 when she overheard the promise, she laughed. And the Lord responded,
"Why did Sarah laugh and say, 'will I really have a child, now that I am old' Is anything too hard for the Lord?" Genesis 18:13-14
Think about that for a moment. Is your situation too hard for the Lord? Is my situation too difficult for Jesus? No. Nothing is too hard for Him. Let that encourage you in your wait today.

Waiting is hard. Especially in our microwave mentality culture. Waiting can feel like a passive activity. That we have no part other than sitting and twiddling our thumbs, while time slowly ticks by, wallowing in our circumstances. Waiting is not a passive activity. God wants us to actively participate in the waiting, to seek Him. We do this by filling our mind with truth about God's character.
"Set your minds on what is above, not on what is on the earth." Colossians 3:2
Waiting reveals where we are putting our trust, in ourselves or in Christ? Let me give you three ways to wait well while putting your faith in Jesus, not self.

Three Ways to Wait Well

1. Seek Him Through His Word

To wait well, we need to seek Him through His Word. There we can find wisdom and patience for purposeful living. The Bible is full of God's promises, which bring hope in our waiting.
"For God has not given us a spirit of fearfulness, but one of power, love, and sound judgement." 2 Timothy 1:7
"Wait for the Lord; be strong and courageous. Wait for the Lord." Psalm 27:14
I love how the psalmist starts and ends the verse with the same phrase. By repeating it at the beginning and the end we see waiting was being emphasized. It was as if the psalmist knew would need to hear it twice for it to really sink in.

"Wait for the Lord." 

2. Seek Him Through Prayer

The second way to wait well is to seek Him through prayer. When we engage our Savior through prayer, the automatic response is we are no longer focusing on our fears, our troubles, our issues, or even our circumstances. We are fully present in our relationship with our Creator.
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7

3. Seek Him Through His People

The third way to wait well is to seek Him through His people. We can find encouragement through fellowship of others. The primary purpose of the gathering is encouragement. Encouragement to live a faith-filled life, not a fear-filled life.
"And let us be concerned about one another in order to promote love and good works, not staying away from our worship meetings, as some habitually do, but encourage each other, all the more as you see the day drawing near." Hebrews 10:24-25

Peace will come in your waiting when you realize you exist for Him. As a believer in Christ, our life is a beautiful testimony to the saving grace of Jesus. When you focus on this fact, you realize that no matter the outcome of your waiting, your life will bring Him glory. No matter the outcome, whether it is what you hoped for or something less, your life will bring Him honor, if you are surrendering your will to His. When we have the right perspective on Christ and our circumstances, there is peace and purpose in the waiting.
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; think about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths." Proverbs 3:5-6