Waiting on God was one of David’s secrets of being a man after God’s own heart. David went in and sat before the Lord (2 Sam 7:18). God was his confidence, and he trusted Him in every aspect of his life: for guidance and instruction (Ps 25:5), for help and defense (Ps 33:20), for victory over his enemies and vindication (Ps 37:7,9,34; 52:9), for deliverance from trouble and destruction (Ps 40:1, 59:9), for His refuge from treachery and oppression (Ps 62:1,5), for His forgiving love (Ps 130:5-6), and much more.
Nothing tries our faith like waiting on God for answers to prayer. Waiting tests our submission to Him as our trustworthy Authority. Waiting is not necessarily resignation from all activity; it is submission to God’s better idea. Waiting on God means that all of our life is brought under God’s umbrella of authority and direction. If we run ahead of God, we will be painfully chastened by turmoil, exhaustion, and failure. Taking matters in our own hands has ample instructive precedent in God’s Word. Think of Abraham with Ishmael, Saul’s usurping the role of a priest, Israel looking to Egypt for help (Isa 30:1-3), or walking in the light of our own fire (Isa 50:11.)
What do we learn while we are waiting? We learn God Himself. God is revealing His perfections, His impeccable ability to be in charge of every detail. His timing is split-second. He is omniscient, omnipresent, and omni-caring. He works all and in all. He gives confirmations of His ever-presentness. He gives us assurances of His real power over the enemy that is not seen. His Holy Spirit focuses us. We want proof, but faith is the substance (not the evidence) of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen (Heb 11:1). The Holy Spirit says, “I am giving you the substance of faith.” He gives the grace to await His purposes until the precise moment when He gives evidence that He was working all along. Without this faith, it is impossible to please Him, for all who come to God must believe that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him (Heb 11:6).
In community with other believers, as we humble ourselves and open up to receive from the body of Christ, we will be strengthened to see the full kaleidoscope of His plan and be encouraged in the grace of waiting.
How Do We Wait?
Prayerfully Psalm 25:4-5
With strength and courage Psalm 27:14, 31:24
Rejoicing and trusting in His holy name Psalm 33:21
Based on the fear of the Lord and His unfailing love Psalm 33:18,22
With hope Psalm 33:20, 39:7
Patiently Psalm 37:7, 40:1; Habakkuk 3:16, Romans 8:25, Hebrews 6:15
Obediently Psalm 37:34, 119:166; Isaiah 26:8-9
Desiring Him Isaiah 26:8-9
Single-mindedly Psalm 62:5
Expectantly Psalm 123:2, Micah 7:7
Believing His Word Psalm 130:5
Assured He is all we need, He is our portion Lamentations 3:24
Quietly Lamentations 3:26
Always Hosea 12:6
In anticipation of joy John 3:29
Eagerly Romans 8:19,23
Next week: Waiting on God: What do we do when God seems slow?
For more on waiting on God, see Prayer Essentials For Living In His Presence, Vol 2, page 277-280. © Sylvia Gunter 2000. Available at www.thefathersbusiness.com