"And now, LORD, for what do I wait? My hope is in You.” Psalm 39.7
Waiting has never been my strong suit. Waiting involves patience, and patience has nearly always been in short supply in my life. You’ve heard of the prayer, “LORD, give me patience, and give it to me right now!”? It could have originated with me. Slow automobile drivers and stop lights that remain red far too long test my patience more than they should. Microwaves don’t cook nearly fast enough. And someone should invent a single cup coffeemaker that can get the job done more quickly.
The adage, “hurry up and wait,” is excellent advice for cultivating hope. Hurry into His presence in your prayers closet and wait for Him. Ignore your text messages, emails, and time itself. The best waiting is waiting upon the LORD. Except this can take what seems to be a long time, at least to our way of thinking. But He is not in any hurry. He has all the time in the world or, more accurately, all the time in the universe. He is the timeless One, and thus has a completely different perspective on time. This verse gives us some sense as to the disparity between His perspective of time and ours: “with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day.” 2 Peter 3:8 If we take this comparison and contrast of time literally, the entire scope of our lives is only about two to three hours per God’s time (Perhaps that bit of knowledge only adds to impatience on our part!).
So, if we’re waiting on the LORD, know that He can “out-wait” us. But, that’s not cause for reluctant resignation to the fact; it instead inspires hopeful waiting. If He is timeless, He has the ability to make us timeless. That means He has the ability to grant to us the precious gift of immortality; time without end. And that’s something definitely worth waiting for.
Don’t mistake His seeming idleness for inaction. “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9 It is patience with a plan. It’s not reluctance or laziness, but patient persistence in allowing time for the penitent to act. Call it hopeful waiting if you will, which brings us back to the plan for our patience. We wait for the God of hope. Bound up with Him are all the richest possibilities. Provision. Protection. Power. Even patience. He alone is the source of all we could possibly hope for.
So, through persistent patience in waiting upon Yahweh, we can truly learn to say, “My hope is in You.”
- From the upcoming book, "Hope for Uncertain Times."
©Steve Taylor, 2018 --Used by permission