“Be patient and wait for the LORD to act; don’t be worried about those who prosper or those who succeed in their evil plans.” Psalm 37:7 (TEV)
One of the great challenges of faith is synchronizing our time with God’s time. Learning to operate on God Standard Time (GST) comes only when we align our heart with His and trust His perfect timing. For most of us, that involves waiting. If it was true of Jesus, the Son of God who waited 30 years to begin His earthly ministry, it will be true of us as well. As I search through Scripture, I’ve discovered a principle that encourages me about waiting on God’s timing.
“The longer the wait – the bigger the blessing!”
How do we synchronize our clocks to God Standard Time? What do we do while we wait?
First, don’t run ahead of God. This is so tempting when we get impatient and tired of waiting. Like Abraham and Sarah, we want to “make” it happen. You remember how much trouble that got them into? God promised to give them a son. They remained childless for years, and Sarah was getting too old to have a baby. So, what did they do? She came up with the idea that they could “help God out” and have the baby through a surrogate. Abraham agreed and slept with Hagar, Sarah’s handmaid, and gave birth to a son named Ishmael who became the father of all the Arab countries today. Later, God’s promise would be fulfilled, and Sarah miraculously gave birth to Isaac who became the father of Israel. Generations of conflict came from running ahead of God. The Psalmists said,
“Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.” Psalm 27:14 (NIV)
When you’re waiting on God, be patient. Don’t run ahead of God to make something happen. You may have to live with it the rest of your life.
Second, look for God’s purpose in the delay. Delays often come for one of three reasons. Divine delays protect us, prepare us and direct us. In Psalm 33:20, the Bible says,
“We wait in hope for the LORD, He is our help and our shield.”
When God brings a delay in our lives, it could be because He is protecting us from harm that we can’t see. Understanding that helps when you are rejected for a position or by someone. Rejection is protection.
Another reason for Divine delays may be preparation. God may be positioning you for His purpose. He may be preparing your character to match your calling. Isaiah 30:18 says,
“So the LORD must wait for you to come to Him so He can show you His love and compassion. For the LORD is a faithful God. Blessed are those who wait for His help.”
Look at the first part of that verse again. “… the LORD must wait for you….” I wonder how often we complain that we are waiting on God when, all the while, He is waiting for us! He is waiting for us to come to Him, to trust His perfect timing, and to allow His Spirit to accomplish His deeper work in us before He can accomplish His greater work through us.
A third reason for Divine delays may be that God is using the delay to direct us. He may be directing you to a Divine Appointment when you’re in the waiting room of life. Waiting on God doesn’t mean inactivity. Look for God’s purpose in the delay. The Psalmists prayed,
“Make me know Your ways, O LORD; Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; For You I wait all the day.” Psalm 25:4, 5 (NASB)
As you pray today, consider what purpose God may have in the delays you are facing. Thank Him that His timing is always perfect and let Him have His way while you wait.