Inside: We want to run ahead of God so many times. We can only be truly effective when we learn to trust God when we’re waiting for answers.
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When I looked into the room all I could see was the bed and the countless machines attached to his body. I knew a child was laying in the bed, but the bed looked like it was swallowing him whole. His little cherub face was puffy and plastic was covering the gaping hole where his heart was. A month had passed in this bed-swallowing condition, and now the family had to wait for a new heart to revive their little boy.
The new heart, while bringing life, meant the end of life for another family. Both events devastating in their own rights. Nothing was certain and so the family had to remain in standby.
How do you wait well when life is hard?
- When you aren’t sure about a decision.
- If you should choose the job or not?
- How to pick the right cancer treatment?
- Find the help you need for mental issues?
This life makes us pause a lot. We are held-up in the mundane things like standing in line for groceries, but when life is hard, the time on hold is harder to swallow.
If life is full of waiting, we have the ability to wait well or wait poorly.
The definition of well is: in a good or satisfactory manner, thoroughly, carefully, or soundly. Sounds like an intentional action. Whereas, poorly is the opposite of the word well; in a poor manner, or ill.
In the Bible, we can get an idea of how God wants us to slow down and pause in Acts 1.
Jesus had just been crucified and resurrected from the grave. He was spending the 40 days from the Resurrection till Ascension with the disciples teaching and training them before He had to leave them.
One day as they were eating together, he commanded them:
4 Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before. 5 John baptized with[a] water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 1:4-5, NLT).
The disciples eagerly wanted to figure out if it was time now for Jesus to free Israel and restore His kingdom.
He said to them:
He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:7-8, NLT).
Jesus then ascended into Heaven and left His friends. We brush over the disciples’ feelings, but I’m sure the days and weeks to come were hard because they had lost a dear friend.
The disciples don’t begin their purpose until they received the Holy Spirit. What great news they probably wanted to share, but had to wait for the proper time.
Running Ahead When It’s too Hard
How many times have we run ahead of God and then wonder why it isn’t working out?
Do you notice what Jesus asked the disciples to do? He asked them to wait and didn’t give them the exact date when to expect the Holy Spirit.
Here is just an example from the Bible, but if you spend times looking through the pages, you will find lots of halting during hard times.
The essence of faith is believing without seeing and trusting in God when we don’t know the answers. In addition, patience usually tags along with faith during these waiting periods.
Everything is fast in our life, we don’t want to be held-up: enter fast food, fast cash, and instant coffee. God uses the waiting periods to help us grow more like Jesus.
We want to run ahead of God so many times because we are impatient in our their sinfulness.We can only be truly capable when we wait for God’s timing and His power to help us achieve what we need to. Click To Tweet
Wait Patiently in the Hard of Life
What can we learn from the disciples as they wait?
- Pray and remain in contact with God.
- Live with the expectation: God will do what He says.
- Trust in God’s promises and His reasoning.
- Be active and not passive- we each have a mission and purpose as part of God’s family.
- Open your heart up to God as He makes you more Christ-like.
As we realize that waiting is part of our Christian journey, we can accept the interims a little better. Honestly, I still dislike the hold, but I now know there is a purpose in the interval.God has a plan for all the struggles, we need to only endure and trust His plans. Click To Tweet
The little boy waiting for a heart continues to wait. Would you join me in praying for this family? This time in the waiting room would open their hearts to God. May He use this experience to grow faith and enable them to share with others how they waited well during a hard time.
Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised. (Hebrews 10:36, NLT).
You’ll Get Through This: Hope and Help for Your Turbulent TimesUnshakable Hope: Building Our Lives on the Promises of GodEncounters with Jesus: Unexpected Answers to Life’s Biggest QuestionsWait and See Participant’s Guide: A Six-Session Study on Waiting Well