February 26, 2019
In God’s Waiting Room
Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord! (Psalm 27:14 ESV)
Friend to Friend
I have a confession to make. I’m terrible at waiting. Whether in a doctor’s office waiting room, parent pickup line, or restaurant waiting area, I strategize ways to wait the least amount of time.
If you can use an app and wait less time than standing in line? I use it. If you can order ahead and potentially wait less time? I do it. Now I realize that this is not all bad; I certainly don’t want everything in life to be a journey. But what if the desire for instant gratification is so strong that it makes me miss important parts of growth and relationship?
At some points in my life, I’ve felt like I was sitting in God’s waiting room. Oh, I know; there were no magazines and no chairs. But for reasons unknown to me, I was waiting on God. To send answers. To open an opportunity. To create a new situation. Whatever the circumstance, it was outside my control and I felt tempted to stomp my foot like a toddler. I sometimes felt tempted to try to make a change without God’s help. Have you ever sat in God’s waiting room? I know you have.
Why does God place us there? While I’m still learning how to wait patiently on God, I’ve combed the Word for hints on embracing this concept. One of those hints is that God wants to prepare us for the answer.
If I gave my 13-year-old son a car for his birthday this year, what would happen? Most likely something horrible since he’s not qualified to drive a car. He hasn’t taken a single driving lesson. He doesn’t know how the equipment functions. He barely understands how to unlock and start the car. My son would have to wait to truly unwrap that gift because he’s just not ready for it.
God alone knows when we are ready for the answer for which we are waiting. He wants us to be equipped for the answer He is providing. He knows that catastrophe could lie ahead if we move on without preparation. He knows how hard it would be to sit and stare at the answer while we continue to work on our qualifications.
Today’s verse provides the encouragement we need to keep going through the waiting period. So often our focus is either on the wait or the result we desire. But while our focus is on the wait, God’s focus is on the work. Be strong and courageous, Friend. God will provide the answers in his perfect timing.
When we begin to view life from a faith-filled perspective, we can look back over the course of the journey and realize that God was there all along. We weren’t waiting for no reason! Spiritual hindsight comes as we adjust our lenses to see as God sees. Although we can’t see things to come, we recognize that just as God had a purpose for the wait in the past, so can He be trusted with the future.
Perhaps today you are waiting on God to provide a new job, heal a sickness, or mend a broken relationship. The journey has been long, and you are flat-out tired of waiting. Take heart. The God who loves you beyond measure is right there with you in your wait. He longs to provide the strength you need to keep from barging ahead on your own. He has not left you alone in the wait.
What we perceive as waiting on God is actually his wooing. He longs to draw you close and equip you well.
The wait has been long, and I’ve grown tired of waiting on answers. Let my soul be flooded with encouragement from today’s devotion. Fill me with an eager anticipation, not for the wait to end, but to be prepared to walk through Your answer. Help me embrace Your perfect timing.
In Jesus’ Name,
Now It’s Your Turn
Have you ever wondered why you were waiting on God to answer a prayer request? Write a short list of encouraging phrases or thoughts from the devotion above that helps you cope with your question of why. Or screenshot the one thought from the devotion above and highlight it with your smartphone editing tool as an encouraging reminder that you are not waiting in vain. Text it to a friend or share on social media.
More from the Girlfriends
Feeling encouraged to gain strength? If this devotion met you in God’s waiting room, you’ll love chapter 5 of Rachel’s book, One More Step: Finding Strength When You Feel Like Giving Up.
Originally published Tuesday, 26 February 2019.