WEEK 6 – Waiting on God
Key Verse: Micah 7:7
“But as for me, I watch in hope for the LORD, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me.”
God answers our prayers in one of the three ways: Yes, No or Wait. Of these, the last one is the most difficult part of the process of prayer. But the author says that waiting is the most important part, because “waiting gives God the opportunity to redefine our desires and align our purpose and vision with his.” She uses three familiar examples from the Bible to bring home the point: Joseph, Hannah, and Mary and Martha.
From his boyhood dreams, Joseph knew that he was destined to be a ruler—his 11 brothers and even his parents would bow down to him. But first God trained him by allowing him to be sold as a slave to Egypt and to be imprisoned on a false charge. As these tragic things were happening to him, it was easy for Joseph to assume that God’s purpose for him failed. But in fact, God was working behind the scenes to prepare Joseph to be used in his redemptive history according to the will of God. “God’s will is not short-term, but flows from generation to generation.” Waiting on God should help us that his ways are not always our ways and we should learn to submit to his ways.
Hannah was barren and Peninnah humiliated her whenever they made the trip to Shiloh. So Hannah prayed for a son, but God did not answer her prayer for a long time. Hannah’s desire was to have a son, but God’s will was to raise a Bible teacher and a shepherd for the Israelites who lived in the darkness of sin. “In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions” (1Sa 3:1). Finally, Hannah prayed to God from her heart and made a vow to dedicate her son to be used by God. Her future son would be more than a human son to her; he would be a servant of God for Israel! It was the moment when her desire became to be in line with God’s will. God answered her prayer and continued to work out his will through his servant Samuel.
When their brother Lazarus was sick and dying, Martha and Mary sent an urgent message (prayer) to Jesus to come and help them. But in his love, Jesus delayed his trip two days to make certain that Lazarus was dead. When Jesus finally arrived, the sisters bitterly complained, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” Jesus told them that his delay was for their own benefit—to teach them that he is the resurrection and the life. He said: “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” When we think God is delaying in answering our prayers, he is working to bless us beyond what we have in mind.
I learned that I must continue to pray that I may submit to God’s will based on his word—my desires to be in line with his will. As long as I know that my prayer is in line with his will, I must not give up just because he does not answer right away (Lk 18:1). I must believe that he will answer in his own time to accomplish his will and his timing is always perfect.
Meditation By Daniel Y. Lee
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