It’s understandable that those two words would be misunderstood in a culture that is driven by instant gratification. But “quick feel goods” are usually most like cotton candy. It tastes good quickly but, truthfully, makes you weaker physically…not stronger.
In God’s process of living, the word patience doesn’t mean “white knuckling it” while all the time waiting for the escape hatch. It’s a fruit of the spirit. It is the ability to calmly hold one’s position without panic. It is a quality that the Holy Spirit is glad to share with anyone who will ask.
Then we have the words of Isaiah 40:31, “They that wait upon the Lord will renew their strenth…” In fact it says that they will “…mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint.”
I don’t know about you, but I’ve experienced a whole lot of fainting going on trying to wait and be patient……understood NOT from God’s perspective, but from man’s natural wisdom. I would have to say that the word wait was literally a four letter word in those cases.
I am so thankful I am learning God’s true perspective:
My previous error…
Here’s what I used to do. I used to wait and try to be patient as I sweated out the manifestation of what I thought I wanted or needed. In other words, I was NOT waiting on the Lord. I was waiting on the appearance of better days….the escape hatch….the object of my faith [except FAITH it wasn’t].
Now here can be the tricky part…
It’s important to have a goal in mind. It’s vital not to take a que sera sera (what will be will be) attitude. Focus on specifics of an answer is a good thing….if it’s held with a gentle mental grip.
Here’s what I am learning to do…
Let’s say I need to pay a bill. I’ve discovered it’s helpful to an inner release of faith to allow my imagination to “see” the bill being paid. After all, very often, we “see” the bill not being paid when we allow worry to usurp the “imagination muscle” of our brain.
[Side Note: It’s a scientific fact that the majority of our thought process takes place in the area we call imagination. What we call logic is totally dependent on the imagination to function]
But…and this is one of those very important buts…
I don’t become fixated on the specific picture. I hold my imagined manifestation lightly, but I put the weight on the wait….as the word is actually used in the scriptures. First, I wait ON THE LORD, not on the manifestation. My attention is one the truth of His character…and that He cares about me…and that He’s just a touch wiser than me [sarcasm].
Waiting on the Lord taps into His life flow [peace, joy, hope, to name a few]. You and I can’t truly connect to Who He Is and What He Has Done without all that good stuff soaking into us.
Wait is also translated “hope” and “gather”
Hope should be self explanatory so I’m going to focus on a fact that most of my readers may not realize. There’s something in the science of biblical interpretation called, ‘the law of first mention.’
That basically means that the first time a word in used in the scriptures gives us the root idea of what the word means.
Genesis 1:9, And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place…” That’s the first occurrence of the word “wait” that we find in Isa. 40:31. Except in Genesis it’s translated “gathered.” That gives us a very important clue to understanding the meaning of what it means to “wait on the Lord”
In Genesis, we have the report that God gathered the waters. Essentially what He did was put the waters within banks to flow. So…wait for it…drum roll.
When we wait upon the Lord, we gather the “waters” of our thoughts and imaginations within the boundaries of the character of God’s truth. This is confirmed by 2 Corinthians 10:5,
“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
So, to wait upon the Lord is a very specific activity to choose until the manifestation of God comes into view. All the while, we get stronger…not weaker and more frustrated.
AND on a parallel track…keep putting one foot in front of the other, doing what your hand finds to do right in front of you. Be an active waiter.