I am a doer. I like to get things done. Check things off my list. Feel productive. I love that I am pretty efficient and can get things done quickly and well. So it frustrates the heck out of me when I want to get moving on something and God says “Wait a second, sister! We’re not moving fast this time! You just need to hold your horses and wait on my timing, my plan!”
I hate when he does that! 🙂
I feel like I’m in another period of waiting on God. I’m ready to move. He isn’t. But I’ve learned from past waiting experiences, and I’m not freaking out this time. I have a weird sense of peace about things. My heart has never been at peace, so it’s so weird to feel peace now. I really feel like I should be freaking out…but I’m not! I’m perfectly OK with things right now because I know that God is working behind the scenes like He always does. He’s shown His presence in HUGE ways in my life, and I feel like I’m finally catching on. I don’t have to freak out and hurry and stress about why things are not happening the way I want them to. I finally get (at least a little more) that God really is in control. Not me! And I’m happy to not have to run myself ragged trying to be in control.
I’m reading a book right now called Jesus on Leadership by C. Gene Wilkes (who lives in Plano, TX!). Early on in the book, there is a section about humility that is immediately followed by a section on waiting on God. Wilkes says there are 3 ways we can wait:
- Quietly – “Quiet waiting is like sitting on a porch at the end of the day, reflecting on the day’s events. This waiting takes you out of your tasks and goals to a place of musing. It is a calculated pause to listen and learn. Waiting on the Lord renews a person’s strength. Quiet waiting is a passive waiting. Your focus is listening for instruction on the next step while considering your last one. Quiet waiting includes reflection.”
- Expectantly – “Expectant waiting is like sitting in a restaurant waiting for a friend who said he would join you for breakfast. Spiritually, expectant waiting is trusting God’s Word, knowing that he is up to something. You wait and expect something to happen, based upon his Word. Quiet waiting is listening. Expectant waiting is looking! It is active and focused! (We) wait based upon (our) trust in the One who told (us) to wait. Expectant waiting (leads) to realized hope.”
- Frustrated – “Frustrated waiting is like waiting in the doctor’s office for two hours knowing you have work to do back at the office. The longer the wait, the greater the frustration. This kind of waiting leads to hurried decisions, loss of focus, and broken relationships. You never see this kind of waiting with Jesus. He quietly and expectantly waited for God to accomplish his plan. Sometimes we are required to wait. Waiting in the context of Jesus’ teachings is trusting there is a season for everything. It is staking your life on the reality that God makes things happen for his purposes and on his timetable.”
When I read this section, I was like “Woah!” I used to wait with frustration, but now I find myself waiting quietly and expectantly. And I can’t tell you how freeing that is!
Years ago, our church had a Taize service where we sang “Wait for the Lord”. Since then, I have loved this song. You can click here to hear the song to get an idea of how it sounds. Below are the lyrics to this song so you can read them as you listen.
Wait for the Lord, his day is near
Wait for the Lord, be strong take heart
Prepare the way for the Lord,
Make a straight path for Him.
The Glory of the Lord shall be revealed
All the Earth will see the Lord
Rejoice in the Lord always,
He is at Hand.
Joy and gladness for all who seek the Lord
All I really remember singing of this song was the first two lines, but it felt so great to sing them over and over focusing and thinking about waiting on God.
Here’s another quote from the book that I like:
“Be patient. Wait. Find a quiet hill or field where you can sit still and hear the voice of God. You will soon discover that if you pay attention to God’s timing in your present, you will see God’s timing in your future.”
This morning on the way to work, I thought a lot about this and decided that life includes a lot of waiting. (As Christians, our whole lives are lived in expectant waiting on the Lord. Hoping and waiting for the day we will see him face to face.) But we have a choice on how we wait. Will we wait frustrated that things aren’t going our way or as fast as we would like? Or will we wait quietly and expectantly because we are confident in our loving Father who takes care of us all so well?