June 10, 2008
The Weight of Waiting
“Why doesn’t the Almighty bring the wicked to judgment? Why must the godly wait for him in vain?”
Job 24:1 (NLT)
My must-have-in-order-to-survive-today’s-busy-lifestyle high-tech equipment doesn’t function right. After dialing technical support and listening to instructions, I press one button and then another. Finally the phone rings. And rings. Relieved when I hear a voice, I anticipate a rapid resolution. Instead, I get a recording, “Please WAIT for the next available agent.”
Arghhhh! I don’t like having to wait. It can bring out the worst in me. Once after a long holding session, I actually threw my phone across the room, fell in a heap on the floor, and sobbed!
God knows me. He is well aware of my weaknesses. So He calls me to His workout room were my weights are actually waits. “Here lift these. When you have completed this exercise, you will emerge a stronger woman.”
So I begin to “strength train” with the waits in my life.
Daily I encounter light waits that serve as a warm up for the heavier waits. How I behave as I wait in line at the post office or grocery store, for example, becomes a testimony to my growing strength and maturity. Sure I sometimes drop the load rather than handle the wait well … I occasionally give in to impatient eye rolling, snide under-my-breath comments, or quick steps to assure my place in line.
Thankfully, God believes in me as a savvy coach believes in his well-chosen athletes. He hasn’t given up on me. He continues to assign me to His wait room where I’m learning daily “wait training” strengthens me for the larger times of waiting. Like the time I had to wait for my first job. As I waited for a call back, my self-esteem plummeted. Yet in God’s good timing He opened the doors to the perfect position. Or, the time I waited as my dad’s health deteriorated. Sadness threatened to overwhelm me. But I emerged from God’s wait room wrapped in my Father’s comfort, having learned to trust Him.
I’ve discovered that waiting isn’t a waste of time, but an opportunity to grow my character. When the wait feels impossible I try to focus on building patience and my relationship with Jesus, rather than fretting. I spend a lot of time in God’s wait room. Next time you find yourself there, remember that God provides the ability to endure when we willingly yield to His strength training process.
Father God, please forgive me for my impatient behavior when having to wait on You. Help me to use time of waiting to grow stronger in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
The Character of God: Understanding His Heart for Us by Brian T. Anderson & Glynnis Whitwer
Visit Van Walton’s blog for more insights on waiting
From the Pound to the Palace by Van Walton
Make a list of the times you have been challenged to wait. Beside each describe your reactions. How can you better hand these situations?
What possible reasons could God have that I should have to wait?
Have the challenges I faced while I waited improved my character or exposed my true nature?
Do I believe God can use the down time of waiting to draw me closer to Him? How?
Psalm 5:3, “In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice; …I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” (NIV)
Isaiah 49:23 b, “Those who wait for me shall not be put to shame.” (ESV)
Romans 15:4, “…the Scriptures give us hope and encouragement as we wait patiently for God’s promises to be fulfilled.” (NLT)
© 2008 by Van Walton. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
Matthews, NC 28105