When You’re Waiting on God
Have you ever had to wait on God for something? Are you waiting on God right now for him to come through in some way? Do you ever feel like God has forgotten about you or abandoned you? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then today’s post is for you!
Waiting on God can test a Christian’s faith and stretch it to the limits. Patience is a major factor in the process of waiting on God. Sometimes God’s timing doesn’t match ours. When God’s promise, our “answer”, or whatever it is we’re waiting on takes longer than expected, it’s easy to grow weary and lose heart. We can get tempted to doubt, give up and/or stop doing what God has told us to do in the meantime. However, if we give up we could lose the very thing that God is trying to do for us or bless us with.
Don’t give up
Regardless of how frustrated, doubtful and weary we get, we shouldn’t give up when we’re waiting on God. God promises us that we if we don’t give up, even when we’re tired, that we’ll get a reward and blessing. He tells us that he will refresh and satisfy us if we will hold on. Then he also promises to renew our strength and give us power to endure. God will give us strength to press on if we will continue to wait on him.
“Let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” Galatians 6:9 (NLT)
“I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint.” Jeremiah 31:25 (NIV)
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:29-31 (NIV)
Jesus endured, so we can endure
We can also receive encouragement to push through with patience. If we fix our eyes on Jesus (not our surrounding circumstances) we can endure. He endured more opposition than we will ever face, and He did it so that we would not grow weary, lose heart and give up. Jesus doesn’t want us to grow tired of waiting on God and give up. He’s seated at the right hand of God in a place of power and honor working on our behalf and interceding for us.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” Hebrews 12:1-3 (NIV)
“Who then will condemn us? No one–for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.” Romans 8:34 (NLT)
Waiting on God requires patience
Sometimes waiting on God requires a significant amount of patience. It may seem as though nothing is happening. In James 5:7-11, we see an analogy of a farmer waiting on his crops to harvest. When a farmer plants a seed it seems like nothing is happening for a while because he can’t see the plant emerging from the soil immediately. Likewise, we may not see results for a while when waiting on God because there may be some work going on “beneath the soil” so to speak.
“Brothers and sisters, be patient until the Lord comes again. See how farmers wait for their precious crops to grow. They wait patiently for fall and spring rains. You, too, must be patient. Don’t give up hope. The Lord will soon be here. Brothers and sisters, stop complaining about each other, or you will be condemned. Realize that the judge is standing at the door. Brothers and sisters, follow the example of the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. They were patient when they suffered unjustly. We consider those who endure to be blessed. You have heard about Job’s endurance. You saw that the Lord ended Job’s suffering because the Lord is compassionate and merciful.” James 5:7-11 (GOD’S WORD Translation)
Sometimes waiting on God requires some work
Typically, no harvest is immediate. It requires patience and work. Using the farming analogy, we have to plant the seed and do OUR part (sometimes required: watering, weeding, and fertilizing). If a seed is completely left alone or if the farmer has given up on it, it will eventually die and never become a plant. Once we do our part, then God can do HIS part (sun, rain, growth). We then patiently wait for the plant to grow. And even though we don’t see anything happening, that doesn’t mean that God is not at work behind the scenes (or under the soil) where we can’t see Him.
Sometimes we may even endure some suffering in the meantime—just like storms sometimes fall on a freshly planted garden. However, we are still called to wait on the Lord with patience without complaining or arguing. We can follow the example of people who went before us who suffered and endured hardships. Some of those with the greatest suffering had the greatest patience (i.e. Job). We can look to them for encouragement—if they can do it, so can we!
Sometimes waiting on God requires some rest
There may be times when waiting on God requires resting, remaining at peace and being quiet. Sometimes the battle is not ours but the Lord’s, and He will fight for us. We are called to peace and rest at some points in our lives. Oftentimes this is the case when there are situations, circumstances, and/or people beyond our control.
“The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace and remain at rest.” Exodus 14:14 (AMP)
It IS possible to rest because God promised it—see Hebrews 4:1-11, Matthew 11:28, and John 14:27. We need to accept this promise/offer. One thing that can keep us from entering into this rest is failing to keep our faith in God. We do this when we try to work to do things ourselves instead of letting God do things in His timing. We need to rest from our “work” as God did (Genesis 2:2—given as an example for us to follow).
This example of rest is referred to as the Sabbath (“Shabbat” in Hebrew). “Shabbat” actually means to cease, end or rest. Hebrews translated it to “cease from work”. From time to time we need to be reminded to cease from the work of doing God’s part. We need to stop trying to fix our circumstances or other people and be at peace regardless of what everything around us looks like.
What does true peace look like? Remember that Jesus was at peace sleeping on a boat in the middle of a severe storm (Matthew 8:23-27, Mark 4:35-41, Luke 8:22-25), and He was also at peace walking on rough waters in a storm (Matthew 14:24-33, Mark 6:47-52, John 6:16-21). We can have peace in the middle of our storms too.
The rest of God and peace in times of trouble
Joyce Meyer discusses “The Rest of God” in Chapter 12 of her book, Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle in Your Mind. She mentions the people in 2 Chronicles 20:12 and how they came to a place of acknowledging their outside circumstances and their inability to handle them and realized that they had to focus on God. Once they did this, God told them in 2 Chronicles 20:15-17 that they did not need to be afraid because the battle was not theirs, but the Lord’s and that they would not even need to fight in the battle. They just had to take their positions, stand still and see the deliverance of the Lord. Joyce says,
“What is our position? It is one of worship and abiding in Jesus and entering the rest of God. It is one of waiting on the Lord continually with our eyes focused upon Him, doing what He directs us to do and otherwise having a “reverential fear” of moving in the flesh.”
Joyce goes on to explain that peace never comes without opposition, and God’s rest can keep us peaceful even during times of trouble. She teaches us that Jesus’ sacrifice will not eliminate all opposition from our lives, but it does give us the ability to handle our “storms” in a different way.
Let go and let God
Joyce’s advice and these scriptures also remind me of a poem I had on a pocket card long ago that has stuck with me and has reminded me to “let go and let God” during many of my own storms in life while waiting on God. This was especially helpful when I was being stubborn and trying to do the work of fixing things myself, in my own way and timing.
Let Go and Let God
Author: Lauretta P. Burns
As children bring their broken toys with tears for us to mend,
I brought my broken dreams to God, because He was my friend.
But then, instead of leaving Him, in peace, to work alone;
I hung around and tried to help, with ways that were my own.
At last, I snatched them back and cried, “How can you be so slow?”
“My child,” He said, “What could I do? You never did let go.”
Take Some Practical Steps While Waiting On God:
- Don’t give up. Focus on Jesus and remember what he did and went through for you so that you wouldn’t have to give up. Remember that God promises to reward those who endure. If you quit too soon, you might be missing your answer to prayer that could be just right around the corner.
- Encourage yourself with God’s promises—Find some scriptures to focus on. Write out a few scriptures on index cards or post-it notes that fit your current situation. Look at these verses often to keep you encouraged and to renew your strength in times of weakness. Say the verses out loud, especially when you’re tempted to give in.
- Have patience and trust God in his timing. Remember that God’s timing is almost always different than your own. He sees the whole picture you don’t. He knows better than you about the best time for your answer to come, and he always has your best interest in mind. Remind yourself that getting your answer in your timing might not actually bring about the results that you want.
- Work when it’s necessary. Is there a part that you need to be playing right now while you’re waiting on God? Pray and ask God if there is anything that you need to be doing in the meantime. Then, start working on any steps that he gives you.
- Rest when it’s necessary. Are you trying to fix things on your own when you should be waiting on God? Are you trying to do God’s part? Pray and ask God where he’s calling you to rest.
- Quit trying to take back what you’ve given God to handle. Let go and let God.
Have you ever had to wait on God for something? Did you wait or not? What was the outcome/result? Tell us about it by leaving a comment below!
Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are rude, disrespectful, sarcastic, offensive, or off-topic. By posting on this site you agree to my Comment Policy.
P.S. If you liked this post, you might enjoy receiving new posts delivered right to your inbox each week! Sign up here.
If you know anyone that could benefit from this, please pay it forward! Share this post via the sharing links below. “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NIV)
There are affiliate links in this post (I may get a small commission if you click on a link and make a purchase).
- Joyce Meyer, Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle in Your Mind (New York: FaithWords, Hachette Book Group Inc. 1995), p.116-118. ↑