“Do you believe that I am able to do this? (Jesus)” Matthew 9:28
Waiting is hard. It has to be one of the most difficult virtues to embrace – especially in America. We’re used to having what we want, when we want it, with no questions asked. Here’s a hard reality – American Christianity tends to be a microwave society – instant growth, instantaneous results, all in warp speed. However, God’s economy tends to function more like a crock pot – slow and simmering, not in a hurry.
It seems that God establishes His Kingdom on waiting – waiting for His best mate for us, waiting for His best career for us, waiting for the right car, waiting for the right house for us, waiting to purchase something until we can actually afford it, waiting on His healing of our wounds (physical, mental, emotional), etc. Life in Christ is about waiting.
The question is, “What do we believe while we wait?” While waiting, our struggle often will be to believe that God is holding out on us. The enemy of our hearts and minds (Satan) will try to convince us that God is for or cares for everyone else except us. After all, God could come through for us, He just chooses not to. Satan tries to get us to doubt God (Genesis 3:1). DON’T BUY SATAN’S LIES!
God uses waiting to develop our character and our ability to trust Him. God is for you. He is not against you. He loves you. He has your best interests in mind. While you wait, it is imperative that you remind yourself of these truths.
In his reflections on Advent, God is in the Manger, Dietrich Bonhoeffer defines waiting as “HOPEFULLY doing without.” In other words, waiting means we are doing without something for a period of time. For Bonhoeffer, he was HOPEFUL because his dependence was on God. It could be a relationship, financial need, an answer to a life-long prayer, or even preparation for the next task.
The question for those of us who are in the “shadows of waiting” is not “How long will I wait?” but, “How will I wait?” Will I be impatient? Will I be dissatisfied with God’s perceived slowness? Will I grumble? Will I reach out to meet that need illegitimately? Or, will I be hopeful?
David stated, “For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.” Psalm 62:5-6
What are you waiting for?
What is God trying to say to you during the wait?
What does He want to show you about Himself?
What is He trying to say to you about yourself?
There is great value in waiting. Don’t lose sight of that fact. In God’s economy, sometimes He accomplishes His purposes more in the process of waiting.