Waiting on God

img_5468“Waiting on God is a part of the process.”

There are times in life when our readiness will not encounter opportunity. We must wait, which can be extremely painful. The wonderment of waiting, however, is the potential for God to prepare us for the extraordinary beyond expectation.

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Like that time we found out my wife was expecting twins!  #BeyondBlessed

Let’s take a moment to consider Luke’s account of the appearance of the risen Jesus…(Stay with me for a moment!)

The risen Jesus appears to his disciples, who were hiding from the authorities in the “upper room” within Jerusalem. Jesus shares a meal with his disciples (24:36-43) before  instructing his followers. Jesus “opened their minds to understand the scriptures.” Once more, Jesus points the disciples to the necessity of the Messiah’s suffering and resurrection on the third day. He continues by affirming that a message of repentance and forgiveness of sins will be proclaimed in  his name! (24:44-47)

There is a reason to consider these words. After Jesus shares these words with his disciples, he marks them as “witnesses of these things.” The disciples are not done! The death of Jesus has not left the disicples without purpose. They will carry forth the ministry of Jesus; they will be witnesses to all of “these things.” 

Good for the disciples – they have purpose!

Big deal…what does their purpose have to do with our waiting on God?

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Before the disciples can go, Jesus has them wait…

You are witnesses of these things. And see, I am sending upon you what my father promised; so stay here in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high. – Luke 24:48-49

Jesus assures the disciples. God will fulfill the promise of the Holy Spirit. The disciples will go inspired and empowered. But, first, Jesus has them wait. He directs his followers to return to the city. He tells them to go back to the upper room. And, he has them wait on God.

The disciples do as Jesus instructs. They return to the upper room in the city (Acts 1:13), where the disciples remain in constant prayer as they await God and the fulfillment of God’s promise.

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The disciples must have been willing to move forward with this ministry, ready to witness to these things, and eager to proclaim the truth revealed to them. But Jesus pulls them back. He has them wait…on God.

There are times in life when we are instructed to wait on God. We are willing, ready, and eager. We deem the time to be right! The time is right for us to have a meaningful relationship. The time is right for us to start a family. The time is right for us to begin a career. The time is right for us to do that thing we have always dreamed of doing. And, honestly, our motives and desires are pure; we intend to glorify God through our relationship, family, career, dream, etc…

But, nothing happens.

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We pray. We keep praying. We devote ourselves to prayer.

Still, nothing happens – We don’t meet the guy/girl; we struggle with fertilty; we don’t get the job; or, our dream turns out to be a nightmare!

Our willingness, our readiness, and our eagerness fail to encounter opportunity. Amid the nothingness we receive from all we offer, we grow frustrated. Our frustration grows into confusion. Our confusion grows into fear. Our fear grows into the deep pain of sadness. We begin to wonder: Where is God? Why does God seem absent? Silent? Apathetic? 

So, we keep waiting…waiting on God.

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The disciples return to the city. They enter into the upper room. They give themselves to prayer. They wait. They wait some more.

On the day of Pentecost, while the followers of Jesus were gathered in one place, the waiting period came to an end. God fulfilled the promise! God poured out  the Holy Spirit and it consumed the followers of Jesus, who had been prayerfully waiting.

I would love to spend more time discussing Pentecost and the inspiration and the empowerment of the Spirit, but now’s not the time. Ultimately, I would make the point that the disciples could not have imagined the effect of the Holy Spirit (here’s to keeping it simple!). Their Spirit-inspired and Spirit-empowered proclamation led to the transformed hearts of 3,000 individuals (oh, and the  start of the Church).

I’m sure the disciples were willing, ready, and eager to move forward with the ministry entrusted to them! But, it was not the right time, because it was not God’s timing. God was still preparing the disciples for the extraordinary beyond  their expectation.

Waiting on God is not easy. We may be willing, ready, and eager. The time may be right for us.  God may seem absent, silent, or apathetic from the nothingness we encounter. The truth to our circumstance is much different. God is present and active. We just struggle  to understand God’s participation. All will work out, but it must happen in God’s time. For that reason, God often instructs us to wait before God calls us to go (maybe one day soon I can share the wait & go of my call story).

Waiting on God is not easy, but the wait is worth it. Within God’s timing, God  prepareus to discover God’s extraordinary beyond our expectation.

So, we keep waiting…waiting on God.

Hey y’all! I would love to get your feedback on my writing. Do you have an opinion on the post? Or, do you have any constructive criticism for working out my thoughts in a more readable fashion? I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment in the reply section or shoot me an email – hamptonumc@gmail.com. —Blessings, RC

4 thoughts on “Waiting on God

  1. In my opinion, it’s kind of like waiting for the traffic light to turn green. When we are in a hurry to get someplace, we want it to turn right now, just because we have some important something to get on with. We may even find ourselves “chomping at the bit” as it were. But, do we zoom thru the red just to get there? Are we willing to risk life and limb to get there? Can you have patience knowing it’s for our highest and best that we not be too hasty, or else suffer the consequences?

    One day a while back, I decided to time the changing of the light. It’s’ seconds! It may seem longer, but it’s seconds. Just the same with sitting thru commercials while watching our favorite TV programs. We want to get on with them. We want to see if what we think is going to happen happens. So hurry up commercials. Time those too would you? Minutes, not hours pass, and we’re back to watching what we want to be watching. Plus, the commercials have actually given us time to get ready for the next part of the show, not taken time away.

    A body may ask what do these two examples of patience have to do with the post? It’s all about the wait. It’s never longer than it needs to be; especially where God is concerned. He wants us to be safe. He wants our highest and best. He can see into the intersection, the alley ways, and can look left and right before us. He knows when, where, and how (best route) to get us where we want to go. He does have his eyes on. His time is different than our time, and we must have faith that he is listening.

    Lastly, my question is how can you pray for guidance and not wait to receive it? How can you ask God’s help and not wait for him to respond? How can you pray for Him to make a way, and then not accept His timing and His direction? And if it isn’t in your best interest, He will make every attempt to guide you to what is. Preparedness will always be key!

    Super fantastic post! Well appointed in scripture, and grounded in wholeheartedness.

    Liked by 1 person

    • SperkyJen, Thank you for taking the time to read and honestly reflect on my last post. Your analogy is correct! We rust ourselves past the details – and, the details reveal the beauty of God! We need to slow down and trust the timing of God. I appreciate your words of encouragement, as well. I realize there is “no beating around the bush allowed” and that it why I wanted your feedback! Thanks for your honesty and your encouragement. I look forward to following your work! Blessings, my friend…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree that we have to wait for God’s timing. Its very important because if we rush into something in our own strength it might work for a while but it won’t have the eternal value that results from God’s timing. I personally believe that we should never wait around idly. We shouldn’t have to be dependent on others for our sustenance while we are waiting for that great ministry opportunity or the ideal job that we were promised. It says in scripture that those who don’t work won’t eat, and we should never get to the point where we see a good day’s work as not being God’s will. Thanks for a lovely post.

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  3. Pingback: (NOT) Ready for More | Skipping Stones

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