“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
And in His word I do hope.” Psalm 130:5
Maybe it’s obvious to you, or maybe not. Wait has a definition. And just in case you’re anything like I am when it comes to the word wait, let’s look at the definition. At the meaning. Of the word wait.
Merriam-webster.com defines wait as “to stay in place in expectation of.” Please note the words “stay in place.” Why do I say please note these words? Because some of us have modified the definition of waiting, as though we have the right and authority to change the meaning, so that the word wait instead means “move when I feel like it.” Or, “Go forward just a little, then stop and wait.” Or, “Let me sneak ahead just a few feet, then I’ll backtrack – if I feel like it.” Or, “I’ll try waiting but if things don’t go according to my plans, and to what I want, well, then, by all means, I’m going to stop waiting.” Or, “it depends on who is telling me to wait.” Or, “I don’t have the patience to wait.” Or, “I’m too afraid to wait.” Do you get the point?
When the Lord God almighty tells us to wait, we need to wait. When He makes it clear He doesn’t want us to move forward – now, or ever – we need to stay in place. We need to not try to justify or defend ourselves in running ahead, or skipping ahead, or even in taking baby steps forward. When God says wait, He means it.
I struggle with this. Do you? I hear Him clearly. Then I see something looming. Ahead. Something, or someone, I feel warrants my needing to move forward. Or I have a thought that waiting really isn’t going to work. Or is going to be too hard. So I start forward. Then God stops me. Sometimes before I’ve made too much of a mess of things. Sometimes when it’s too late. But the overall point is this. I’ve moved forward, taken action, done something, according to my own will, or the will of others, disregarding, and rebelling against, the will of God. Against Him. Not yielding myself to Him, to His will, and to His time frame. Then I have to repent. And start all over again. Seeking Him. Listening for His voice. Hearing Him. Being told, if it is still His will, to wait. For Him. To lead. By His Spirit. In line with His Word. For His glory. Not for me, and my own selfish ends. For Him. For others. To express my love to Him, and others. To serve Him, and others. To bring Him praise and honor.
It’s not about me, then, is it? Of course not. Following Jesus is about Jesus. About God. About God’s will. And oh, if I would only learn to wait. To remember that waiting when God says to wait is an act of submission, of servititude, of honor, of honoring Him, of obedience to Him, which should be borne of love for Him.
Is God telling you to wait? You know what to do.
It really is rather simple, and abundantly clear, isn’t it?
If it’s God’s will, do it.