Monday, March 8, 2010

Time Spent Waiting

What are you waiting for?

If you are not waiting, right now, you have been recently. We all seem to find ourselves waiting for something much of the time. So, what are you waiting for, right now?

In a poem by Horace is the latin phrase, "Carpe diem", which means, "Seize the day". There is a Rabbinic phrase, "And if not now, when?"

Some would add the negative connotation of, "Eat and drink, for tomorrow we die." (I Cor. 15:32). Here, Paul, writes as to what our attitude should be if we had no hope of a resurrection and spiritual life after this physical life on earth.

As Christians, we do have a hope of salvation and eternal life in heaven with God. So, with that ahead of us, how should we be redeeming the time? Whenever we spend time waiting on something or someone, minutes and hours and days are lost.

God does tell us to "wait on the Lord". This instruction is relating to God's timing, our patience (or lack thereof), and learning to be led by the Spirit of God. It would be great if God were the only one that we spend time waiting on, but He is not.

We seem to find something to wait on and a reason to postpone action and obedience on a routine basis. Sometimes, waiting is an excuse we use for the fear or intimidation we feel. As long as we can claim we are waiting on someone or something, we have an excuse for inaction. As relates to God and His Word, this inaction can be disobedience, just as not waiting when He leads us to can be disobedience.

What are you waiting for? Is it any of these: love, justice, revenge, miracle, healing, joy, peace, happiness, wealth, work, vacation, children, retirement, acceptance, friendship, approval, forgiveness, help, understanding, ministry, planting, rain, harvest; or are you waiting to cry, mourn, rejoice, sing, be happy? Do you believe you are waiting on life or for death? Are you waiting on any of a thousand things before you take the next step or are you really only waiting on God to provide the direction?

I wonder if we might claim to be waiting on God at times when He has not instructed us to do so. The opposite can also be true, when we cannot sit still when God is wanting us to wait.

How do we know the difference? Is God telling us to wait or move? One thing that we must honestly examine is our heart - our motive for action or inaction. Pray and ask God for clear direction and open eyes to honestly examine if we are using an excuse to not follow the Spirit. Have confidence that God desires that we obey, and thus, that we have a heart sensitive to His leading. When we are honestly seeking His direction, He will provide.

Wait on the Lord, but be careful not to let too many other things cause you to wait and wait and wait. The days are short, make use of the time you have to do good and what is right in the sight of God.

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