I do not like waiting. Naturally I’m the type to go after what I want, when I want it… which is usually immediately. I know waiting has its purpose, but of course to me and my limited perspective it rarely seems necessary. That is ridiculous to say out loud since I’m a firm believer that God has a will a way and a perfect timing for bringing things about in all of our lives, but it’s not always easy to remember that in the midst of the wait. Currently, I have been in a season of waiting… for one thing after another. I know many of you can relate. I have so many friends who are waiting on a positive pregnancy test, on medical results, on Mr. Right…. And if I’m honest, lately I have been infuriated for all of us in this season. Subconsciously I even started to believe that waiting was ungodly. Like I had done something to postpone Gods promises to me and my family. Or maybe He wants me to learn something and I haven’t so I keep having to take the same test over and over until I pass. Today I finally reminded myself what the Bible has to say about waiting, and it kind of rocked me.
Isaiah 40:31 says that she who waits on the Lord will have renewed strength. Psalm 27:13-14 says that in the waiting comes strength and heart courage. Lamentations 3:25 says that the Lord is good to those who wait on Him. …the list goes on. If you gather a list of verses about waiting and read them, one thing that will probably jump out at you is how often waiting and hope and heart seem to go hand in hand. We are constantly reassured that as we wait, if we choose to place our hope in Him, He will bring courage and strength to our hearts. “Hope” in this context literally means to to expect something good in the future. Paul takes it even a step further in Psalm 27:13-14 when he says that he would have despaired if he had not believed (to be firm in a matter) that he would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living (here on earth). What a great picture of waiting with anticipation of good.
So, waiting isn’t passive. Seasons of waiting should actually be active… they require exercising our faith and our expectations of seeing God come through for us – for our circumstances. How we wait can even establish us as righteous. “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith” Romans 4:3.
We are told that hope is the anchor of our soul (Hebrews 6:19). One of the most incredible things to me is how my soul (mind, spirit and body) feels when my hope is anchored in the right place. On the contrary, when I anchor my hope in the promise instead of the promise giver, it feels off. And if I don’t redirect it, eventually my heart will feel sick. (“Hope deferred makes the heart sick” Proverbs 13:12)…and a sick heart is incredibly dangerous since the condition of our heart determines the entire course of our life (“Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life” Proverbs 4:23)
As I enter into 2017 I’m still in a season of waiting and you may be too. My encouragement to us is to wait with active hope in the promise giver, not the promises we’re waiting on – knowing that He will always follow through with the best for us. And as we actively seek Him, he has assured us that our hearts will be filled with hope, strength and courage.
I’m anticipating good things in this new year for us, friends!