by Sarah Bryant
“The LORD is good to all:
and his tender mercies are over all his works.”
What do you desire? What does your heart wait for? Is there something that has been on your prayer request list for many months—even years—that remains unanswered? Maybe you have interceded for the salvation of a dear family member or spiritual renewal? Or does your groan with impatience for graduation or another major life step? Are you impatient to be married? Or maybe you are waiting for God to provide financially for a family need? What about a “great opportunity to witness” for Christ and do something world-impacting? Whatever you are waiting for today, I would like to ask you, how are you waiting?
Impatience or Submission
Waiting. How do you wait today? Are you pacing the floor with impatience, wondering if God’s timing truly is best? While waiting, we often encounter with a grimace the impatience if our souls to wait for God’s perfect timing — sometimes a time line that is not what we hoped or prayed for.
The Lord has put a certain desire on my heart which I have prayed toward and waited for a long season now. Knowing I have asked for this in accordance with His revealed will in His Word, it has become a matter of diligent intercession. However, He has not deemed the time right yet to answer in the affirmative. At times, I am ashamed to admit, the fear has crept in my heart that maybe God will not answer my prayer?
Trusting that God is Good
While waiting, we are called to trust God wholeheartedly — to trust ourselves to His incredible goodness and impeccable character, believing that no matter what God’s timing is, or how He answers our heart’s desire, that He is good. We must be committed to never waver in our knowledge of His goodness. The Psalmist in 130:5 said that “I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope,” and that is exactly how we must wait. Not twiddling our fingers, but calling to our hearts and minds to God’s holy unfailing promises. They never fail. As humans, we can hardly understand that incredible truth of God’s unchanging, unfailing word. We fail, we make mistakes, we misspeak, and we often break our promises. However, God does not. Through the Old Testament prophet, He proclaimed, “For I am the LORD, I change not” (Malachi 3:6). Therefore, He is utterly worthy of our complete (although finite) trust. Filling our minds with His precious promises (2 Peter 1:4) is a beautiful way to quiet our impatient, waiting hearts!
I encourage you to spend several hours studying God’s promises to those who wait faithfully on Him. Your heart will be left awed and speechless, worshipping Him for His goodness toward His people! A friend recently shared with me a list of God’s promises to those who wait for Him that she personally studied. I would love to share them with you here.
»Ps. 25:3; Is. 49:23 You will not be ashamed.
»Ps. 25:5 You will be led and taught in God’s Truth.
»Ps. 25:21 You will be preserved.
»Ps. 27:14 Your heart will be strengthened.
»Ps. 33:20 The Lord will help and shield you.
»Ps. 37:9 You will inherit the earth.
»Ps. 37:34 God will exalt you.
»Ps. 40:1; Micah 7:7 God will incline His ear unto you and hear you.
»Ps. 52:9 You will be an encouragement and example to other Believers.
»Ps. 59:9 God will be your defense.
»Ps. 62:1 Your salvation will be from Him.
»Ps. 62:5 Your expectation will be from the Lord and nobody else.
»Ps. 123:2 God will show mercy to you.
»Ps. 145:15 God will give you food in due season.
»Prov. 20:22 The Lord will save you.
»Is. 25:9 You will be glad and rejoice in His salvation.
»Is. 30:18 You will be blessed.
»Is. 33:2 God will be gracious to you, He will be your arm every morning, and He will be your salvation in times of trouble.
»Is. 40:31 Your strength will be renewed.
»Is. 64:4 You will have things God has prepared for you that eye hasn’t seen not ear heard.
»Lam. 3:25 The Lord will be good to you.
A Sovereign Planner
Have you ever marveled for hours on the fact that God, our Savior, made the heavens and the earth and all creatures and man with simple a word? A word! What power does our word hold? Not much — we cannot speak anything into being! God’s power is that great! When I find myself marveling in this truth, my doubts fade away as vapor. How can I ever doubt His plan and timing in something so small, in comparison to His power revealed in the world around us? His view is eternal, and mine so limited by time. His plan so vast and higher than I can imagine, for I am finite. Isaiah 55:9 says, “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” What an incredible thought! The heavens are so high, so unattainable, and the universe so vast. And its Creator takes time—delights in—using me for His glory and doing all things for my eternal good (Romans 8:28)! “How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!” (Psalm 139:17)
The Lamb is Worthy
As the Lord was showing me His awesome power and plan, He also showed me another important aspect of waiting. The promises He provides are too good to speak of; however, that is not the only reason we are to wait for God to work out His perfect, sovereign plan. In Revelation,we quickly read why:
“Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created” (Revelation 4:11).
God sent His OWN SON — how many times have we heard that, that we do not even stop to think of its significant meaning?—His own perfect Being, into this world to save His own creature. There was nothing to cause Him to do that except His incomprehensible mercy; He would have been fully justified to send every man to hell. We have sinned infinitely against His holy nature. As my favorite preacher Paul Washer said, “Never ONCE have you loved God as He ought to be loved. There is not one moment that Christ did not love God.”
God is worthy. He is worthy of everything. EVERYTHING — and still more! This fact alone gives us reason to trust Him forever, no matter what He brings along. He has showed love and mercy to the unlovable — toward you and me — and saved us from His just wrath. Therefore, we trust Him with our souls, and we trust Him with every small area of our life.
I encourage you, dear waiting sister, not to stand despairingly with limp arms, wondering if the Lord Almighty has heard your desires and your requests. Trust Him and His promises, for “this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him” (1 John 5:14-15). Lay your desires at God’s feet, and leave them there. The Maker of Heaven and earth holds them in His hand and is aptly able to bring them into being with one word.
I am here to joyfully attest that when we do just as God has commanded in asking Him in faith, and then patiently waiting on His perfect timing, there is found true joy.
And in this alone do I find true peace…
Just as He promised.
“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee“ (Isaiah 26:3).