Thursday, April 19, 2012

Waiting on the Lord

Have you ever had to wait for something?  Maybe it’s as simple as waiting for the light to turn green, for something to come in the mail or for the elevator door to open.  Or maybe it’s something a little more serious like waiting for the doctor to call with your test results or waiting to see if the stick will turn blue.  No matter what you’re waiting for, waiting can be hard!  We live in a fast-paced society where the virtue of patience has gone by the wayside, which makes waiting even more difficult.  What happens when you face a major life-changing moment and God asks you to wait and to wait joyfully?

Our family has been in a season of waiting.  From our perspective, life isn’t working and something needs to change.  We’ve been praying our hearts out for the last year, crying out to God for answers.  We’ve gotten clear answers here and there, but when we’ve moved forward on those answers, doors have been closed and some of them with a slam. 

Right now our life could be pictured like a long hall of doors.  Our family is standing in that long hall.  There really aren’t that many options and some of the doors we’ve peeked through look unpredictable and unclear.  The hall is very uncomfortable.  We’re all getting impatient and tired.  Ultimately, we’re standing in the hall, waiting on God to show us which door we should open and walk through.  God keeps whispering, “Wait.  Trust.  Just a little bit longer. I’m working.  Hold my hand... ”

The hardest thing for me this past year has been to submit to the fact that God rarely works according to our timetable.  I’m very independent and like to think I have control of my life.  Up until getting married and having kids, I’ve been able to do things according my timetable.  Sitting here and waiting for God to work everything out for our family, when our situation affects the precious children we have, is hard!  Waiting for the Lord’s timing takes courage especially when it affects those around us.   I’ve noticed out of desperation, our fallen race gives God deadlines and, if He doesn’t come through when we expect Him to, we take matters into our own hands.  Taking control of the situation or taking forbidden shortcuts to escape prolonged difficulty or suffering is never the answer to our dilemmas.  The only way to receive the full benefits God has for us is to trust Him through the delay and wait patiently for Him to act on our behalf. 

I hear God whispering again.  “Wait.  Trust.  Just a little bit longer. I’m working.  Hold my hand... ”.

During this past year, we’ve been on an emotional rollercoaster.  As we get farther out, the amount of lows are decreasing, which are welcome blessings.  But, there are still days that are difficult.  I have days where I don’t feel like getting up and facing another nasty email, phone call or text.  There are days where I’d love to hop in the car and start driving and never come back.  There are days where I feel just plain beaten down and weak!

But then God reminds me of Isaiah 40:28-29:

28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

I love verses 29-30!  “He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.  Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.   They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

Do you ever wonder why Isaiah made the analogy of our strength being renewed like a soaring eagle?  I did so I hit the Internet.  I found and interesting article online at

”An eagle learns to soar by using thermal currents of air. These warm air patterns are created by the surrounding terrain. They will spread their wings and their tail feathers and let the wind carry them to new heights, and then glide down to catch another upward thermal. Soaring saves an eagle energy because it does not have to flap its wings as often.

If you notice the scripture says, those that WAIT upon the Lord shall mount up with eagles’ wings. (Isa 40:31) It seems like that is the hardest lesson in life, to learn to wait upon Him and not do something in our own strength. Sometimes He wants us to wait because it is a matter of timing, like for instance we are losing our baby fur and growing eagles’ wings. But other times He wants us to wait upon Him because He wants to carry us so we don’t suffer burnout in flapping our wings! The truth is, when one learns to abide in Him, he or she learns the secret of waiting upon Him for everything one does.”

That’s the key – let God take control so we don't exhaust ourselves.  In other words, we need to give God the steering wheel and trust Him to lead us.  Let God do the work since He's much more capable than we are.

When we hand over the control, it also helps to switch our focus.  Instead of looking at situation or circumstances we’re facing which bring us down and make us weak, we need to turn our eyes upward.

How does our perspective change when we focus on God?

We remember His power and majesty and we’re naturally in awe.  We can remember that He has EVERYTHING in His control and in the palm of His hand.  It’s comforting to know that we don’t need to try to take over because He knows what’s best for us.  Our pity-party can turn into a praise-party.  Our crying can turn into joy.  Making it a priority to spend time with the Lord and being in His presence each day – morning and night – helps us hear His voice and stay in step with Him. The more closely we walk with the Lord, the better we can hear His voice and slow down to keep in step with Him.

In the midst of our difficulty, we know God is working for our good and He will sustain us during it.  Without patience, we’ll never become the people God desires us to be or achieve what He’s planned for us to do.  God’s always faithful and will provide for us in the best possible way at the perfect time!

A friend shared a very wise quote with me:   “God’s never in a hurry, but He’s always on time”.  Anonymous

Due Time

How often, Lord, I've wanted life
to be as I preferred,
impatient to reach all my goals,
insisting I be heard.
How many times I questioned You,
embarking on a feat,
unwilling to be passenger,
but in the driver's seat.
How seldom I was patient
as I begged that life be calm,
not believing all along
that I was in Your palm.
How fast possessions slip away,
though often I would cling
to things thought safe instead of trusting
what Your will would bring.
Be with me, Lord, as I search for
another hill to climb.
I know rewards will come to me,
all in the Lord's due time.

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