The Lingering Wait
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord (Psalm 27:14)!
Some delays in our lives can be excruciating. The painful delays of long-term illnesses leave us hanging by a thread, often making us feel as if we are experiencing a funeral day after day. The emotions experienced leave us drained and even, at times, angry when watching the slow progression our loved one faces.
Having a family member or spouse in dangerous locations through military duty or the separations due to divorce or death can swallow our minds in despair and loneliness. Fear often overwhelms us and the lingering wait creates an ever-growing canyon of hurt and pain that provides no apparent relief.
It is in the waiting process that the mightiest inner work of the Holy Spirit is often accomplished. It is through the agonizing minutes, hours, and days that we learn to rely heavily on God’s Word to strengthen and support us as our apparent canyon grows larger. It is at this point that we often face the temptation to fall into despair. It is in Scripture that we are assured of His promises in the lingering waiting process.
They who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint (Isaiah 40:31).
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning. O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption (Psalm 130:5-7).
Because of our Baptism, Christ’s Holy Spirit resides in us. His power, His grace, and His mercy are available day in and day out, offered one day at a time. When decisions are to be made, He guides us. When heartbreak overtakes us because of the lingering delay, He promises to be with us. Allow His Spirit to give you Christ’s strength, for He understands your need and endured it all before you (Hebrews 2:17-18).
Praise God that our strength is not dependent upon us, for we would fail and fall. It is dependent on the forgiveness and restoration of the Spirit in us. God honors every tiny step we take toward trusting Him in the process of waiting as we grow and lean on Him. Remember, when eyes look to Him, He is never disappointed, but rather He will rejoice over us with singing and quiet us with His love (Zephaniah 3:17).
Prayer – Dear Father in heaven, I do not always understand the lingering wait that I occasionally endure. As I seek You in the Word, reveal the love of Your Son who willingly suffered all for me and understands completely. May Your Spirit be my Comforter and Source of courage and strength as You use the circumstances to grow in my love for You. Amen.