Waiting for God’s timing is neither passive nor idle–it takes discipline and commitment. I can think of four basic requirements for successful waiting.
Faith. The Lord’s ways and timing are nothing like ours (Isa. 55:8-9). From a human standpoint, He usually does things in a totally different way than we expect. But as we trust Him more, we’ll discover that His approach isn’t so strange after all. And when we live in harmony with God’s will, His timing starts to make sense.
Humility. To wait for the Lord, you must be convinced of your need for Him. Submission to His divine will requires humility–you cannot charge ahead with your own plans and at the same time be fully surrendered to God.
Patience. Are you willing to remain in your current position until you receive clear divine direction? Pausing for clarity from God does not mean that you disengage and allow circumstances to fall apart around you. Waiting upon the Lord is a deliberate decision that requires patience.
Courage. Waiting for God often takes courage, especially when there is pressure to act. If you’re not careful, you might stop listening to the Lord and follow other advice. So keep your ear attuned to the voice of Almighty God, and you won t go wrong.
Waiting upon the Lord is one of the wisest, most important decisions we make in life. And contrary to popular assumptions, it is an active endeavor that requires faith, humility, patience, and courage. When you rely upon God and wait for His timing, the various facets of life fall into place.
Read – Matthew 6:25
Today’s devotional has one primary objective: to help you enjoy yourself, your life, and your Lord more . . . without feeling guilty or unspiritual. Yes, enjoy!
In our work-worshiping society, that is no small task. Many have cultivated such an unrealistic standard of high-level achievement that a neurotic compulsion to perform, to produce, to accomplish the maximum is now the rule rather than the exception. Enough is no longer enough.
Christians are not immune from stress fractures, especially vocational Christian workers. How many pastors or missionaries do you know who truly enjoy guilt-free leisure? How many Christian executives can you name who really take sufficient time to relax? On the other hand, how often have you heard someone boast about not having taken a vacation in several years? Or being too busy to have time to rest and repair?
Work is fast becoming the American Christian’s major source of identity. The answer to most of our problems (we are told) is “work harder.” And to add the ultimate pressure, “You aren’t really serving the Lord unless you consistently push yourself to the point of fatigue.” It’s the old burn-out-rather-than-rust-out line. Let’s go with a different rationale: not only, “It’s okay to relax,” but also, “It’s essential!” Without encouraging an irresponsible mentality, it says, “You can have fun and still be efficient.” In fact, you will be more efficient!
Join me in this prayer to start our new commitment:
Lord, our God,
Our world has become too small, too routine, too grim. We are enduring the scenery instead of enjoying it. We really take ourselves too seriously . . . and our stress continues to multiply.
We desire change . . . a cure from this terminal illness of dullness and routine.
You have made us whole people who are free to think and relax in leisure, not slaves chained to a schedule. Enable us to break loose! Show us ways to do that. Give us the courage to start today and the hope we need to stay fresh tomorrow . . . and the next day, and the next.
Bring the child out from within us. Introduce us again to the sounds and smells and sights of this beautiful world you wrapped around us. Convince us of the importance of friendships and laughter and wonder. Put our world back together.
May we become people like Your Son, committed to the highest standard of excellence and devotion to Your will, yet easy to live with and at peace within.
In His strong name we pray,
Read | 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
When it comes to learning about the end times and the return of Christ, many believers feel confused by the elaborate symbolism the Bible uses to describe these events. Clearly there are certain mysteries regarding the end of life as we know it, and God has chosen to present some of these topics in unique and interesting terms.
One revelation, however, is quite clear: We can be certain of the sights, sounds, and feelings surrounding the moment when Jesus returns, as today’s passage makes clear.
We will hear the magnificent voice of the Lord as He descends from heaven. The voice of the archangel and the sound of a trumpet of God will also be audible (v. 16). We will see Jesus Christ with the archangel, and the deceased saints who had trusted in the Lord will be raised to meet them in the air (vv. 16-17).
We will feel our bodies instantly transformed as we are “caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord” (v. 17).
With these miraculous happenings mapped out for us in God’s Word, there is no reason to feel fearful about the return of our Savior. It will be a time of worship and rejoicing. No matter what happens in the world around us from now until then, we know that we can place our confidence in Jesus Christ. Just as He promised, He will return—accompanied by the archangel and announced by a trumpet—to take His children home for eternity.