The Waiting Game

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“Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.” ~ Psalm 27:14

Waiting is a theme for a number of the Psalms – moreso than in any other book in the Bible. David, Israel’s shepherdking, was familiar with waiting. He had to wait on God to sort out all the mishaps with his rise to kingship. There was a lot of tension between him and King Saul. There were times when David had to literally get out of, dodge, leave Jerusalem, because his life was in jeopardy. Saul’s men were looking for him to kill him. During this very difficult time David learned to wait upon the Lord.

David had opportunity to speed up the waiting process. He had a chance while hidden deep within a cave, to kill King Saul, ending the wait, but he chose to wait upon the Lord.

Would you have been able to do that? How do you feel about waiting upon the Lord? How do you handle it?

Despite what you might think or hear others say, there are good things that happen while we wait.

Waiting Builds Character

The waiting process for David built character in his life. It made him a better person. David’s men saw the opportunity presented in the cave as a God-given moment. Remember they said,“This is the day the LORD spoke of when he said to you, ‘I will give your enemy into your hands for you to deal with as you wish.’” But David said to them in verse 6,“The LORD forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the Lord’s anointed, orlaymyhandonhim;forheisthe anointed of the LORD.” Think of the respect David’s men gave him that day because he chose to wait upon the Lord. Would you have been able to do that?

You see, I didn’t understand waiting when God first called me into ministry. I was on a mission trip to the Dominican Republic when I answered God’s call to ministry. I didn’t think waiting would be a part of that call. I guess I thought I would answer the call to ministry and have a job preaching the next day. Little did I know that it would be 6 long years before I entered the ministry full-time. God needed to build character in me be- cause I was a character. God used that time to shape and mold me into the man He wanted me to be. He’s not done either. I had to wait, and I like to think that something good happened because of it.

I believe David became the greatest king Israel ever had because he was described as a man, “after God’s own heart,” but he was also a man who knew how to wait upon the Lord.

Waiting Stands As A Testimony Of Hope

The word “wait” used in our psalm can mean to put hope in, expect, to be eager, to put trust in. It is also sometimes used synonymously with the words “trust” and “hope.” To wait is to trust. To wait is to hope. An author I recently read said, “To wait for God is the ultimate expression of trust and hope.”

The Best Example of Waiting

The best example of Someone Who believed and lived this principle out is our Savior Jesus Christ.

I was thinking of His temptation in the wilderness. He was fasting when Satan came to Him and tempted Him with food. He waited. After seeing that this tactic didn’t work, he tempted Him in regards to trust in God. “Throw yourself down and God will save you.” Jesus waited. When that didn’t work, Satan tried offering Him all the kingdoms of the world. What did Jesus do? He waited and placed His hope and trust in the Lord.

There was a lady I became close friends with several years ago. She has since gone to be with the Lord after losing her battle with cancer. She was a special and awesome lady! She was a great friend to many. She was so full of hope and trust in the Lord. Even to her last minutes on her deathbed she remained hopeful in the Lord. She had to wait upon the Lord, and she did it with happiness and joy. Can you wait upon the Lord like that?

I was also thinking about Jesus in the garden the night before His death. Remember that story? Do you re- member Him as He was anxiously waiting? He was in prayer and He was deeply disturbed, but He found strength to pray, “Not my will, but Thine.” Reminds me of the of the song:

“Not my will, but Thine; not my will, but Thine;

Not my will, but Thy will be done, Lord, in me.

May Thy Spirit divine fill this being of mine.

Not my will, but Thy will be done, Lord, in me.”

That is the testimony of someone waiting upon the Lord. Through all of this, Jesus testified to trust in the Father. His disciples saw this just by His waiting upon the Lord in different situations. They learned that God is faithful and can help us in the wait.

As we walk out our Christian lives, let us remember two ways God will use our waiting for good in our lives:

1. God uses waiting to build and transform character.

2. God uses waiting as a testimony to others of our hope in Him.