My dear Hauwa,
I think this is a good time to share with you how I’m learning to wait on the Lord. I trust that it will help you as you journey through 2016.
As a single adult waiting on God for a mate amongst other things, I certainly have learned what it means to wait and for this reason Isaiah 40:31 rings true, especially for me; “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
I used to dread waiting but God has shown me that waiting can be a good thing. Previously I considered waiting like a necessary encumbrance; as though I was waiting for a flight and couldn’t wait to get to my destination, or as though I was waiting in the waiting area for a meeting that was being delayed. Each minute felt longer than normal as I watched everyone else seem to be making progress and maximizing time. I was often so irritated that it all turned into frustration and impatience. I have learned, of course, that that is definitely not the Isaiah type of waiting that could “renew our strength.” On the contrary, my kind of impatient waiting leaves one physically and emotionally exhausted. It has been a journey but I have truly learned.
The Hebrew verb, ‘to wait’ (qavah, kaw-vaw) means to bind together (perhaps by twisting). The word was used to describe the making of rope from weaving together smaller and finer twine. We need to bind our hearts to the will of God, with a progressively developing habit of trust. Each time we trust the Lord we add to the thickness of the rope.
‘Quavah’ also means to collect, to gather together, and to expect. As we wait, we spend time collecting information about God and our lives and we expect Him to bring them to pass. During a ‘waiting’ period we pro-actively identify with the purposes of God as He reveals them to us. He has shown Himself to be faithful and loving; this should encourage us to surrender our wills to Him. And as we surrender our wills, our waiting no longer becomes a chore.
I’ve learned that waiting is akin to having the attitude of a well-trained waiter. A well trained waiter at a high class restaurant anticipates the need of the one he or she is waiting on. He doesn’t stay too close to be a bother but is close enough to respond to the customer’s needs. Before the customer makes a request the waiter is attentively watching to anticipate the need. When a napkin drops, he is there to quickly pick up. Believe me; it takes a deliberate desire to leave the customer pleased to wait properly. In like manner, waiting on the Lord means that we prepare ourselves to rise to the occasion when His need requires us to act.
When I adopt this attitude towards waiting on the Lord, it adds purpose to the time I spend awaiting a particular blessing. In fact, time seems to pass more quickly when I am diligently working to serve God. I find joy in others and God seems to pull me out quickly whenever I feel depressed or weary.
Making the choice to serve God while waiting is not easy, but it is more satisfying. And I am reminded, like the waiter that delights the customer, that I get rewarded after the meal. I not only get a hefty tip, I get my needs met as I meet the needs of the Master. In the process, He prunes me of character traits that do not please Him and I am encouraged, by the assuring smile He gives as I serve at his table, that He will not only give me what I need, He’ll also give it at the time that is best for me.
Shifting my attitude from one of “just waiting” to “waiting upon the Lord” has shown me that waiting can be a good thing after all. It has encouraged me greatly and changed my perspective, giving my life renewed strength, purpose, and meaning.
Here’s to purposeful time of waiting on the Lord.
God bless you,
Image credits: depositphotos.com, gettingthroughthis.com, anngrahamwordpress.com