Not that four-letter word
As Christians we are not supposed to say certain words. We all know them; they are right on the tips of our tongues. Go into any high school in America and you will hear those words used quite often. If the principal at any high school disciplined every student who used profane words, they wouldn’t do anything else all day long. My column today is not about those four letter words or their use in high schools, in music, or in movies. We could all do a little work at guarding our minds and tongues in regard to those four letter words.
It’s not those four letter words that are on my mind this evening. The four letter word that is giving me a problem at the moment is the word wait. I hate to wait. I don’t like to wait in doctor’s offices, in long lines at the store, or for a person that might be running late. I am learning to be better about it because sometimes I am late. I guess I don’t mind waiting a little while as long as it’s not too long and it isn’t too inconvenient for me… just kidding!!
My real problem with waiting is when it comes from God. When God says wait, I can go crazy inside, mainly because God can be on a whole different time table from me. When God says wait it will not be for just a few minutes or even hours, it is going to be for a long time. My problem is that God has all the time in the world. He doesn’t seem to realize that I have a limited amount of time to live, so I want Him to hurry up!
The reason that I am writing about waiting is that I feel like God has me waiting on Him. I decided that I would reflect on my favorite scripture about waiting while I waited. Isaiah 40:31 says that if we wait on the Lord we will mount up with wings as eagles. I like that image because I love anything to do with eagles. What is interesting to me about that passage is that different translations use different words. One has the word wait while another has the word hope and a third has the word trust.
I had never seen the other words used in that passage so I was interested in the meaning of the other words. Wait means to stay in one place because you expect or hope that something will happen. That seemed interesting because it implies that I have something to do. Hope means a feeling or belief that something you want to happen is likely to happen. What a great attitude to have while waiting. Trust means a feeling of confidence in someone that shows you believe they are honest, fair, and reliable. Naturally, we know that God has those qualities and we can be confident in Him.
When I thought about it I realized that waiting was not a passive activity. I took the scripture in Isaiah and rewrote it in my own words. I came up with this translation. But those who expect, based on belief that something is likely to happen, because they are confident that the Lord is honest and reliable, will discover that their strength is renewed so they can soar with the eagles! When you look at waiting in that perspective, it doesn’t sound so bad.
When we are willing to wait on the Lord, the Spirit can guide us. Sometimes we have to wait because God has some things to do behind the scenes in order for everything to come together. It is difficult for us to understand, but God needs time to work out all the details so everything will fall into place. We also need to remember that His timing is always perfect…even though we wish He would hurry up. God is trying to work things out for our best, so we need to step back and trust Him with an expectant heart because He is honorable.
I want to encourage you if you find yourself waiting on God…give Him time because He is working on your behalf. He wants what is best for you and is working to make it happen. Waiting doesn’t mean sitting idle. Waiting calls for me to have a hopeful, expectant heart. I have seen God move in the past and can trust that He will move again. Hang in there because God loves you and He is going to do something great in your life.
Doug Creamer teaches Marketing at East Davidson High School. Visit www.dougcreamer.com