Wait for the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.
Waiting on God sounds like a great idea for people of faith, but the real test of our ability to do it comes when our life circumstances seem out of control and the overwhelming need is for results quickly. God gives all of us “tests” of our faith in Him by allowing situations to create pressure on us to make hasty decisions on our own wisdom. To live by faith necessitates our learning to wait on God to give us clear direction and for Him to work things out on His schedule and not ours. How do we learn to do this? We must learn to draw our strength from Him as the above verse states. Spiritual strength is more like marathon runner strength than power lifter and body builder strength. To walk with God and wait on Him requires endurance and patience; we are not be try and “bulldoze” our way thru situations to get short term results. God is always looking at the long game, not the short game! To build endurance in our spiritual life, we must practice daily trusting in God in both big and little decisions. Just a runner slowly builds endurance by daily runs with more time and distance added slowly, so must we grow in faith and strength by daily practice and application of God’s promises and direction to us. Slowly but surely, we will gain strength. The other element is courage. In the old testament, leaders of God’s people were often admonished to “be strong and courageous.” (Joshua 1:9) Courage is a matter of the heart and our faith in God. It does not mean we never fear, but rather our faith is stronger than our fears as we know God is good and in control. We gain courage through the Holy Spirit and God’s Word as we learn to better obey God and walk in faith in Him. When we are saved by our faith in Jesus Christ thru God’s grace, the Holy Spirit indwells us and we now have a new power to become courageous, if we will learn to draw from Him and not ourselves. The new life of Christ in us needs to be the strongest voice and influence in directing us in how to respond to the challenges of life. By choosing to put God’s will first, we will find courage as we know that if we stand with Him, we have Him to help us in our trials. To be self-willed does not give these assurances and confidences as we are doing things our way and not His. Our relationship with God thru Christ is to be one of peace, joy and security; we will then be able to wait on Him with strength and courage. It all begins in our response to Him; be sure Jesus is your Savior, and then be sure He is Lord in all your circumstances in life and watch Him grow you in an amazing way! It is the blessed life for sure!
Love in Christ,
Pastor Gary Houdek