Why We Have to Wait for the Lord

Earlier this year a friend prayed for me.

In the midst of the prayer he stopped and told me he felt the Lord was giving him a verse for me: Isaiah 40:31.

He told me how I had been faithful in waiting on the Lord and then told me some of the things he felt the Lord was going to do for me in the near future consistent with Isaiah 40:31. It was so positive, I couldn’t help but wonder if he had confused his hopes for me as a friend with the voice of the Lord. I was ready to dismiss his encouraging words as just that.

Two days later my legal assistant gave me a thank you card for some flowers I had bought her the week before. On the thank you card she had written, “Isaiah 40:31.” I asked her why she had written that verse. She replied that she had prayed and specifically asked the Lord for a word for me and that is what He had given her. At that point there was no doubt my friend had heard from the Lord two days earlier when he gave me the same word. So, I began to study Isaiah 40:31.

Isaiah 40:31 reads:

Yet those who wait for the Lord

Will gain new strength;

They will mount up with wings like eagles,

They will run and not get tired,

They will walk and not become weary.

When I began studying this verse, I did what I often do when studying the Bible: I asked questions, specifically, “Why do we have to wait upon the Lord?” It’s  a fair question, and there is actually a very good answer. That answer is, time.

We exist in time. We experience the present, the before, and the after. One thing happens after another. It is a construct in which He has chosen that we should live our lives, and while God can alter time, it seems to me He usually chooses to work within it.

As a practical matter, that means that for the Lord to do a certain thing in your life, other things may need to happen first, things you may have no control over and of which you may not even be aware. If you begin to think of the complexity of it and God’s sovereignty, it is mind boggling.

I made the biggest career move of my life early last year. The three years leading up to it where the busiest of my life. I knew I couldn’t continue at that pace–no one could have– and I was waiting for it to change, but now I can see that I was “waiting” because the Lord was allowing certain things to happen at other places and with other people before the circumstances would be right for me to make a move.  My “waiting” was simply an acknowledgement that God was sovereign not slow.

The result of waiting is seeing the faithfulness of God, which invigorates and brings a new found energy to continue to walk, run, and fly. Those who do not wait, who do not stay in the yoke, who pull the rip cord, or bail out because of the stress, the work, or the burden, miss what God was preparing for them, and while they may get temporary relief and temporary rest in the natural, they miss the the opportunity to soar with the sovereign, faithful Lord.

Wait for the Lord. GS.