We live in a “make it happen” world. We have come to expect a life that moves at speed. We don’t like waiting. We want things instant, yesterday, so we can avoid “wasting” any of our precious time.
Our culture even has a whole vernacular that reflects our “want it now” ways – overnight success, Google Instant, ready meals, The Fast Diet, TV on-demand…
We have become so used to getting what we want, when we want it we have less and less tolerance for delays, interruptions and taking a slower-pace.
So, what happens when we are praying for change and God doesn’t seem to be acting? What happens when we are seeking direction and God seems to be quiet? What happens when God tells us to wait? What happens when we are waiting on God and His timing is different to our timing?
Yesterday, we asked the question What is the Hardest Thing to Pray and honestly shared that being prepared to trust God’s will is harder than we often admit. I shared how important I think it is to be real about the parts of following God that we find difficult.
Waiting on God has always been difficult for God’s people. The Bible is littered with people who have tried to take matters into their own hands as they grew tired of trusting in God’s timing.
Nowadays it seems it’s becoming even more challenging. It’s counter-cultural. It seems passive. It can feel frustrating as we feel like our lives are standing still.
In this series Sweet Surrender, we are spending time looking at how God wants us to live lives which are dependent on Him. Our timing needs to be centred on the timing of God, for our balance, peace and perspective.
There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—
A time to give birth and a time to die;
A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.
A time to kill and a time to heal;
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to weep and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn and a time to dance.
A time to throw stones and a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace and a time to shun embracing.
A time to search and a time to give up as lost;
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear apart and a time to sew together;
A time to be silent and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate;
A time for war and a time for peace.
Just as a child needs to trust their parent, so we need to trust our Heavenly Father. In His wisdom, He knows what is best for us. He knows what time we are in.
God sees the seeds which are germinating under the soil. He sees the growth that is happening when we feel like everything is dormant. Like an experienced gardener He knows that there are seasons, seasons for beautiful blooms, seasons for bountiful fruit, but also seasons for the earth to sleep, to be prepared renourished and replenished for the future seasons it will face.
Our society now regards waiting as a waste of time, dead time, useless. God uses waiting for growth, strengthening and nourishing.
Waiting can be hard to endure. It’s a hard commandment to hear from God. But a waste of time – not in God’s Kingdom!