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Turn Waiting Time into Blessing Time

Four faith-filled things you can do when you’re stuck in traffic, waiting at the doctor’s office or just about anywhere!

Waiting with God
Credit: m-imagephotography

How do you define waiting? Do you think of it as simply as an inconvenience to be endured—or a period of anticipation and perhaps even blessing?

The Psalms are full of references to waiting for God to save, to act, to do something.

“Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord” (Psalm 27:14).
“We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield” (Psalm 33:20).
“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes” (Psalm 37:7).

From a Biblical perspective, waiting is not just something we have to do until we get what we want. Waiting is part of the process of becoming what God wants us to be.

Part of the lesson is that we learn the difference between our demands and God’s desires. And we learn what God means when He says, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways” (Isaiah 55:8).

For when we enter into the Lord’s timetable (or at least are forced out of our own), it quickly becomes clear that what we think we need doesn’t always match up with what God knows is best for us.  Waiting can lead us down the path of healthy humility to a place where we can “Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness” (Psalm 29:2).

Often when we find ourselves waiting, whether in traffic or for good (or bad) news, we try to distract ourselves. Why? Because waiting is uncomfortable; it’s proof positive that we’re not in complete control of our lives. Instead of checking email or calling a friend, use this time to find the good things God has waiting for us as we wait. Here’s how:

  1. Be where you are.  
    Step back and observe your feelings—notice them, but don’t dwell on them. Where are you? What does it look like? Smell like? Try to be fully present and accept that you are where you are for a reason.
     
  2. See whom you’re with.
    Are there others around you? Can you do even one small thing to make their day a bit better?  Mother Teresa once said, “We feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.” A quick smile, a friendly comment or a sympathetic look can change someone’s life.
     
  3. Pull out your prayer list.
    We’re always complaining that we have no time to get everything done—especially when our plans are interrupted. But interruptions are pockets of time for prayer, if we choose to use them that way.
     
  4. Work on memorizing a praise psalm.
    Try Psalm 18, 111 or 135, any of which make good ways of waiting on God while you wait for…whatever!

Do you know that another meaning for to wait on is to act as a servant? When we are “waiters” we are expected to be attentive, to be alert to whatever it is that God might ask of us. If we are truly waiting for God, we are waiting (wanting!) to serve Him in every way possible. “For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!” (Isaiah 30:18).

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