Recently, I had an experience that made me review how we, as Christians, wait on God.
Waking up early one morning, what hit my thoughts almost immediately was ‘that need’. A parcel I expected which will enable me to attend some programs that day. I sat up, read my bible, and prayed. I mentioned it to God over and over. Worry sneaked in and almost filled my heart. But, thank goodness I snapped out of it.
“Brooding over this matter won’t help, please. You’ve prayed, just let it be, I said yo myself. Or maybe, I’ll find an alternative. I don’t know how long I can wait.”
After a while, I made some calls and came up with plan B. Then I continued with my preparation, getting ready to head for the day’s numerous activities.
Beep, Beep… A message. It arrived. The main parcel. I didn’t push for it. I didn’t press unnecessary buttons. Just the prayers I made… The answer was right in front of me. My eyes widened and my heart danced. God is faithful! Then I stopped. I felt ashamed. I imagined God looking down on me and shaking His head… “You just couldn’t WAIT.”
“Lord, I’m sorry”, I muttered.
Imagine the sparkling joy that would have covered my face if hung on – one more second, minute, or hour – to receive that main parcel. I watered the excitement down because… I could not WAIT.
We’ve been drawing lessons from this man Moses – the man with a radiant face. I thought I had “seen it all” till my heart soaked in this incidence:
Moses had been leading the children of Israel on this journey to the promised land. As they journeyed, the need to receive instructions from God concerning His people arose.
“And the Lord said unto Moses, come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give them tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them. (Exodus 24:12)
Take note of this: come up to me into the mount, and be there…
I read that part again… And be there. Be there.
“Is that how you commune with God?” I asked myself. I’ll need to receive something from Him – an instruction, counsel, direction, insight, provision – I come to the mount… In prayers. But being there… I’m not too sure. Most times, I’m in a hurry to rush out. I even check my time, to know if I’ve completed the set – 1 hour, 30 minutes…
Not saying it’s sinful to approach God timing yourself (because you have some other activities to tackle – He knows), but we’ve thrown the point of being there into the ocean of hurry and quick-fix. We’ve forgotten that they that WAIT upon the Lord shall renew their strength.
Wait! To “wait” means to remain in a state in which you expect that something will happen soon.
Waiting is something our fast passed 4G world has no time for. But are we going to drag that into our communion with God too? And to think of it, where has all the “no time” activity taken us to? Most Christians still struggle and are stuck in various areas of their life.
God still had something else to teach me there:
And Moses went up into the mount, and a cloud covered the mount. And the glory of the Lord abode upon mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days: and the seventh day He called unto Moses out of the midst of the cloud. (Exodus 24:15-16)
What?! So Moses was just there, waiting, for six days before God called out to him on the seventh day?
“But it was God that called Him up in the first place. Why did He keep him waiting this long?”
He’s a God of perfection. He knows the perfect time to show up. He wants to see how much you trust Him. His ways are not the ways of man. He’s preparing you to receive the great and marvellous things in store for you. Sitting under God’s glory, in that crimson cloud must have bathed Moses with what He needed to receive all God had to present to Him.
So many answers to that startling experince.
It dawned on me that when God wants to give something remarkable, that will produce remarkable radiance in someone’s life, it’s always accompanied by – a Wait.
Abraham waited for Issac. Zechariah and Elizabeth waited for the birth of John. The disciples waited in the upper room for the Spirit outpouring. Jesus waited in the wilderness, for fourth days and fourty nights, in prayers, as He started His earthly ministry. Joseph had a rough wait before the fulfilment of his dreams. Moses waited fourty days and night to receive the commandments – and came down afterwards, his face shinning – Radiant.
And the Bible as well tell us that “they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary, and they shall walk, and not faint“. (Isaiah 40:31).
“Lord, I’ll love to learn how to wait, but how do I do it? Go to the mountain and sit for fourty days?”
Not necessarily. Here are some ways the Bible teaches us to WAIT:
- Wait on your knees: In 1 Thessalonians 5:17, the Bible tells us to “pray without ceasing“. Prayer is the means you communicate with God. Therefore, you need to keep in touch with God through prayers to express your desires to Him as you wait… And you do that without ceasing. Anytime. Anywhere. But remember: the prayer of a sinner is an abomination unto God. Kneel at the cross first to reconcile with God if you’re still a sinner, then keep sending your requests to him in prayers. He hears and will answer.
- . Wait in His word: God’s word is life. It reminds us of God’s promises and injects us with the grace and strength to wait. As Joshua 1:8 says, “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success“. The Bible is the mirror for a radiant life.
- Wait as a lifestyle: Waiting on God isn’t just when you open the Bible or fall on your knees. In your office, or classroom, or kitchen, anywhere and everywhere, you can practice the presence of God, as Bro Lawrence shared in His book – The Practice Of The Presence Of God. Let all you do reflect your belief in God, in His omnipresence and omnipotence. And waiting doesn’t mean you fold your arms and keep peering into the Bible forever… Get to work. Get busy. You remember Zachariah, he was serving, in his duty post, when the parcel he had been waiting for arrived. As you wait, you’ll not only receive those earthly blessings and provisions you desire, God will help and prepare you to meet Him in that blissful home on high.
- Waith in faith: But without faith, it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6). If faith is missing in your wait, you’ll almost be waiting in vain. Have faith in God. He’s not a man that He should lie. Learn from the great man of faith, Abraham: And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. (Hebrew 6:15)
- Wait with joy: Clothe yourself within and without with the oil of gladness. Praise God continuously. Don’t walk around with a gloomy and sick face; as if you’re having a fight with God or someone. And like the case of the children of Israel, soon, the walls of Jericho will fall, and you’ll march in to receive the promised blessing you’ve been waiting for.
Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: WAIT, I say, on the Lord.Psalm 27:14