The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him.
At our first entrance into the school of waiting upon God, the heart is chiefly set upon the blessings which we wait for. God graciously uses our need and desire to help educate us for something higher than we were thinking of. We are seeking gifts; He, the Giver, longs to give Himself, and to satisfy the soul with His goodness. It is just for this reason that He often withholds the gifts, and that the time of waiting is made so long.
But as for me, I will watch expectantly for the Lord;
I will wait for the God of my salvation. My God will hear me.
And we know that God causes all things to work together for good
to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.
What is it that God has you waiting for? What need has He brought into your life that you are waiting for Him to provide? Perhaps you are waiting for His salvation in the life of another. Or perhaps you are waiting for His supply for a financial need. Perhaps you are struggling, like Paul, with physical affliction of some sort, and you are waiting for healing or even just relief from the pain. Or perhaps you are mired in a difficult circumstance and you are waiting for God’s deliverance in one form or another. Be assured that God has not forgotten you.
Think for a moment about waiting… Most of us aren’t good at it, and we don’t like it. We don’t like to wait in lines, wait for traffic jams to clear, wait for doctors to see us, wait for the check at dinner, wait for a friend to return our call, or wait for our children to do what we told them.
There are, however, sometimes that waiting does have a more positive feel to it. We call that anticipation. It is an expectant looking forward to something we want. A child looking forward to Christmas is a perfect example… counting the days, knowing there is something good ahead. Maybe it is hard to wait, but the assurance that it will be worth it shades even the waiting with delight.
In the verses from Lamentations and Micah above, the words translated “wait” both convey a sense of eager and confident expectation, a patient trust that grows out of an ever deepening relationship with God. I have many needs, and I don’t know how God will ever manage to meet them. But just like I know that Christmas brings delights, even though I don’t know in advance exactly what they are, so I know that God has a wonderful plan for meeting my needs.
But more importantly, those needs are a vehicle for God to give Himself to me. They are a preparation of my heart for knowing that my greatest need is for Him. As I endure the waiting, I look more and more to God – not just for His provision or deliverance or healing or salvation, but to Him for Himself. Both of the prophets above are waiting for God – not for His gifts. For them, and for me, the waiting brings deep satisfaction with all God is for me in Christ Jesus. I can rejoice not in just what He provides, but in all He is.
It is when Christ Himself becomes my treasure, rather than what He can provide for me, that the things of this world lose their grip on my heart. When He is my complete satisfaction, waiting becomes just another place where He lavishes His love upon me.
O Lord God,
You are Jehovah Jireh, my Provider. But even more than things and solutions and healing and deliverance, You provide me with Yourself. What an incredible gift! Thank You for not bringing immediately a solution for my every problem. If You did that, I would look only to Your hand of provision, and not to Your face. I would only seek You for what You could do for me, not for Who You are. Paul talks about fighting the good fight – help me wait the good wait. Help me patiently endure whatever is necessary that I might gain Christ. For His great glory… amen.