During the hustle & bustle of Christmas, it seems counter-intuitive to think about waiting. However, life is brimmed with such moments. Imagine putting yourself in the shoes of the Israelites of old. They waited and waited and waited for the promised Messiah to arrive. And over and over and over, God promises that the day would surely come.
Read Genesis 18:1-15. Abraham and Sarah were growing old, and their expectant hearts had grown doubtful. For years they waited for a child but instead grew bitter and broken. Although Sarah had taken matters into her own hands and tried to find a resolution, she wound up more desolate than before. Lonely. And bruised. Her plan backfired, creating heartache and anguish.
Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children. She had a female Egyptian servant whose name was Hagar. And Sarai said to Abram, “Behold now, the LORD has prevented me from bearing children. Go in to my servant; it may be that I shall obtain children by her. And Sarai said to Abram, “May the wrong done to me be on you! I gave my servant to your embrace, and when she saw that she had conceived, she looked on me with contempt. May the LORD judge between you and me!”Genesis 16:1-3, 5
Like Sarah, we all have waiting seasons. We wait for a child. A job. Better health. A long-awaited answer to prayer. It’s unavoidable…this life is filled with WAIT. It is easy for us to push and prod to get our way, attempting to be like God. We want things done a certain way. We think we know what is best. Honestly, we just don’t like our current season…we think ANYTHING would be better!
We struggle with accepting God’s plan for our lives. Do we trust that He really knows best? But in God’s eyes, waiting is part of our sanctification. It is how He works within us.
Molding and scraping. All part of His plan. He is making us an image bearer. Our pride is broken so that humility can be born as a reflection of His image.
Abraham and Sarah waited for a son, and God fulfilled His promise. Their son Isaac was born, such a precious gift. A reminder that God is faithful. His timing may not be what we expect, but nonetheless, it is always perfect. His plan is better than we can imagine. The gift He gives is worth it.
During this season of Advent take a moment to sit still. Slow down to see God working. It is in our seasons of waiting that God grows us. Our dependence on Him is strengthened. He brings us into a better understanding of who He is. Our wait time is never useless.
Isaac is a precursor to Jesus…a picture of our promised Messiah. This story serves as a great reminder. Not only was the Savior coming as a babe wrapped in swaddling clothes…there is a waiting promise applicable for us today. Jesus will come back again (Jn 14:3). We must patiently wait for His 2nd coming.
But how well will we wait? Will we scoff like our dear friend Sarah? Will we take matters into our own hands, forgetting about God? Will we allow DOUBT a seat at our table?
Now the Lord was gracious to Sarah as he had said, and the Lord did for Sarah what he had promised. 2Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him.Genesis 21:1-2
God doesn’t show up early, nor is He ever late. At the very time…His promise will be revealed.
“Problems patiently endured will work for our spiritual perfecting.”A.W. Tozer
Do you have unanswered prayers? How is God revealing His character to you during the wait?