When we’re in seasons of waiting, we think something’s wrong with God. We might even think we’re in sin. Yet, we see from the Bible that waiting is often God’s plan for us and is therefore an intentional and purposeful part of faith. God has something to do, something to achieve in our waiting. Therefore, waiting means cooperating with the processes of growth.
There is a story of a man who noticed the great patience that a mother was displaying with her crying daughter at the grocery store. At each outburst, the mom continued to respond calmly, “Don’t be upset, Sophie. We’ll be home soon.” “It’s OK, Sophie. We’re almost done, then you’ll get a break.” “Just be patient a little longer, Sophie. It will be over soon.” The man finally said to her, “I am so impressed with how calmly and patiently you responded to your daughter! How old is Sophie?” The woman replied, “Oh no, you’ve misunderstood. My daughter’s name is Ashley. My name is Sophie.” I guess talking to yourself could be one strategy for patience.
How do you feel about waiting? Are you like me? Do you enjoy a nice long wait? (insert wink here). How about at the doctor’s office? On the beltway? At the DMV? The airport? In the Starbucks line?
There are casual kinds of waiting like those above, but then there are other, more serious forms. The single person who desires to be married, waiting for a spouse. The childless couple who wants to start a family, waiting for a child. The person stuck in a job they hate, waiting for work that is meaningful and significant. The person struggling with depression, waiting for a morning when they might feel happy. The person who’s ill and who’s hoping and waiting to get better. The spouse that’s in a hurting marriage, waiting for things to change.
As they should, believers look to a loving Father in heaven for the delivery of each of these answers. In other words, in waiting for needs to be met, they wait upon God to meet them.
The Bible is replete with admonishments to wait on the Lord. These verses (and many more) speak of the promise that God responds to those who wait on him:
“The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.” Lamentations 3:25
“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” Psalm 27:14