In a culture of fast foods, microwave meals in a minute, and 30-second sound bites, we have trouble waiting for anything. Indeed, our willingness to wait has become a thing of the past. We are very much like the obnoxious little girl in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory; we cry, “Don’t ask how, I want it NOWWWW!”
So . . . how do we wait on the Lord as we have been instructed to do in Scripture?
The Lord is good to those who wait on him, to the one who seeks him.
The Bible tells us to wait on the Lord by seeking Him, and the best way to seek Him is when we are waiting on Him through our prayers. When Jesus said to His disciples, “Watch and pray” He was giving them the formula for the work in waiting on the Lord. As we wait (watch) for our Lord, we are to be on our knees in prayer to Him. We are to stay in constant communication with the One who will guide us and give us exactly what we need, exactly when we need it, and in precisely the way we need it. The Lord truly is good to those who wait in prayer on Him.
How has your prayer life been lately? When it comes to the work in waiting on the Lord, we must always remember that His answer to our prayer is always immediate; it is either . . .
No prayer goes unanswered. Unfortunately, we are easily discouraged when our prayer is not answered the way we wanted!
That is what we must keep in view as we walk with Christ through the details of life. Our waiting on the Lord is a work that is performed from our knees. The life of the apostle Paul is a wonderful example of what it means to work while waiting on the Lord. Paul had some kind of affliction (he called it his “thorn”), and he prayed to God three times that it would be removed from him. Clearly, after the first prayer, Paul could conclude the answer was certainly not “Yes.” It was either “No” or “Wait.” The same was true after his second prayer. But after his third prayer to God to remove his “thorn,” he received his answer: a resounding NO!
[God] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)
Paul never stopped praying, and he received God’s answer with great joy, because he knew God is good and would always give him what was best. Paul knew and lived out the truth of the psalmist:
The Lord is near to all them that call on him, to all that call on him in truth.
To be sure, the apostle Paul really did want God to take away his thorn. And it was right that he pleaded with God. But when he received God’s answer, he rejoiced! He wrote:
I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
(2 Corinthians 12:9-10)
Remember, the work in waiting on the Lord is a wonderful work when it is performed from our knees, regardless of the answer we receive, simply because of the goodness of the One whom we receive it from!
This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!