Be still my heart.
Be still before the Lord, and wait patiently for Him. (Psalm 37:7)
Some days it’s hard to be patient. I don’t know about you but lately I have been struggling. Questioning the Lord’s plan for my future and doubting His timing. I have been anxious, and I find myself laying awake at night wondering when God will answer my prayers, always worrying how certain situations in my life will play out. I need direction, guidance, and discernment.
I’m 22 years old: preparing to graduate college this month and get married the next. Everything about my life is about to change, and I am walking into a new season of life full of new adventures, new relationships, and new journeys; a new home, a new school, a new career path, and yes, even a new last name.
I have spent the last few months trying to figure out so many parts of my future, and at times I feel so overwhelmed. Sometimes my heart feels as though it’s about to burst.
There are certain areas of my life that I have been praying about for years. Yes, years. Not just a couple of weeks or months, but years. And sometimes I feel as though my prayers are going unheard. I find myself pleading with God to answer my request, and to say that I’m impatient would be an understatement.
I have been allowing myself to get frustrated and feel defeated. I have questioned God’s timing and plan, and have doubted his plan for my future time and time again.
Have any of you ever been in that situation? Praying for something that’s on your heart, whether it’s a new job, a new home, a bill that needs to be payed, a healing, a broken relationship, or even a certain situation in your life that you need to turn around. You pray about it, again and again and again.
And nothing happens.
And still nothing happens.
What if God never answers my prayers? Do you hear me God? Time is running out. You begin to lose hope. Slowly your trust in Him may begin to fade.
I’m not going to lie and say that waiting upon the Lord is easy. In fact, it is anything but easy. But what if God’s plan wasn’t to take you out of your current situation, but to allow you to go through it for a specific purpose? What if in the midst of your waiting God is trying to teach you and equip you and prepare you for what is next in your life? What if this is all just a part of a bigger plan for your life?
When I say that I trust God, I am saying I TRUST YOU GOD. I trust your timing, your plan, and every second you have planned for my life.
And recently, I have continually been reminding myself of this. It is one thing for me to say I trust God, but it is a totally different thing to make trusting Him a lifestyle. What does worrying do for me? How can worrying about my future or certain situations change them?
I need to stop worrying about my current situations and future, and instead turn to THE ONE who is in control of it all.
When we say we trust God, that doesn’t just mean when things are easy, or when things are going in our favor. It’s not enough to partially trust God, or only trust Him with certain areas of your life. Trusting God requires you to fully and totally submit yourself to God in all areas, even in the times of uncertainty or waiting.
But as for me, I trust in You, O Lord,
I say, “You are my God.”
My times are in Your hands.
[ Psalm 31: 14-15 ]
I trust you God, so that means in my time of waiting I still trust You. And lately, I have been realizing a few things about “my time of waiting:”
Sometimes there are blessings even in the waiting.
Sometimes God asks us to wait even when He’s already promised us something.
So many of us are too busy stressing and worrying about our lives that we miss out on what God is trying to teach us in our current situation or struggle. We do not understand or hear what the Lord is whispering to us because we don’t take the time to be still and listen. We are too preoccupied worrying about our future.
The whole idea of waiting goes against everything our culture teaches us. Our culture says everything must be now, in my time, when I want it. We live in a culture of instantaneous answers, satisfaction, and access to anything we could want. Everything in our flesh wants us to run forward full force. But, what if God’s plan is for us to hit the brakes and wait on Him? What if waiting isn’t a bad thing, but is actually a blessing? In Hebrew, one of the words for wait is Qavah. Translated, this means to “look patiently,” to “tarry or wait” or to “hope, expect, look eagerly.” So, when God tells us to wait, He is telling us to be patient; to have hope and expectation of what He is going to do.
What if this time of waiting is a necessary part of God’s plan? What if God is trying to refuel you, teach you, and prepare you for things in your future?
Have we forgotten that even people throughout the Bible had to wait upon the Lord?
- Abraham was 75 years old when God first promised him that he would become a great nation (Genesis 12:2-3). And we know that his son Isaac was born when he was 100 years old. That’s 25 years of waiting for God to fulfill his promise.
- David had to wait around 20 years from the time he was first anointed until the time he became king.
I know imagining waiting on the Lord for that long may seem overwhelming. But the Bible does tell us a few things for us to be doing in our time or waiting.
How do we wait on the Lord then?
- Prayerfully ( Psalm 25:4-5 )
- With strength and courage (Psalm 27:14, 31:24)
- Rejoicing and trusting in His holy name ( Psalm 33:21 )
- Based on the Fear of the Lord and His unfailing love ( Psalm 33:18,22 )
- With hope ( Psalm 33:20, 39:7 )
- Patiently ( Psalm 37:7, 40:1; Habakkuk 3:16, Romans 8:25, Hebrews 6:15 )
- Obediently ( Psalm 37:34, 119:166; Isaiah 26:8-9 )
- Desiring Him ( Isaiah 26:8-9 )
- Single-mindedly ( Psalm 62:5 )
- Expectantly ( Psalm 123:2, Micah 7:7 )
- Believing His Word ( Psalm 130:5 )
- Assured He is all we need, He is our portion ( Lamentations 3:24 )
- Quietly ( Lamentations 3:26 )
- Always ( Hosea 12:6 )
- In anticipation of joy ( John 3:29 )
- Eagerly ( Romans 8:19,23 )
Waiting on the Lord is hard, but it is so worth it. Allow your time of waiting to be a time of growth, renewal, and anticipation. Use this time to grow closer to the Lord, to strengthen your faith and your trust in Him. In your time of waiting, I challenge you to be on your knees more now than ever before; to continually be seeking the Lord, praying, fasting, and listening to Him; to be in the Word each and everyday, and to hide God’s promises deep within your heart. Speak these promises to yourself each and every morning. Cling to these promises, knowing that God’s Word is true and His promises are real.
Sometimes waiting can be a beautiful thing and can teach you more about yourself and others. It can be a beautiful time of growth, of strength and renewal in your life. Maybe, just maybe, having you wait upon the Lord is the only way God can get your attention, and the only way he can help you grow and help you become who you need to be for your future.
Take heart my friends. We are all called to wait upon the Lord at one time or another. However, it’s how you handle your time of waiting that will show you and others Who your hope and trust is in.
This passage in Isaiah is one of my favorite passages. Know that the Lord will fulfill and give you all the strength, endurance, and patience you need:
He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength. Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:29-31 ESV)
Regardless of if I wait a day, a month, a year, or 50 years, these few things will never change: My God is good, and faithful, and I can trust Him. His promises are true. His plans for my life are good and perfect and true. He loves me, and he loves you. And, if he never answers another prayer the way I would like during my lifetime, He will still be good and forever worthy of our praise.
In our times of waiting, Lord, be glorified.
The Lord is good to those who wait for Him. [ Lamentations 3:25 ]