"Wait on the Lord and be of courage and He shall strengthen thy heart. Wait, I say, on the Lord." Psalm 27:14
Waiting seems to be a major part of life, don't you think? Waiting to finish school, waiting to find someone, waiting to be fulfill a dream...it seems that most of life is spent in limbo, suspended above the next stage.
So, what shall we do as we wait? Well, the Bible says to be courageous. You know, of all the adjectives I'd use to describe myself, courageous is certainly not one of them. So, how can I make myself courageous enough to continue on? I guess I have to keep the rest of the verse in mind, "Wait on the Lord."
Sometimes our trials, extended uncomfortable - even painful - periods of life, can be beneficial. No, I'm not trying to trivialize any pain by saying, "it's gonna be alright." But we are promised that if we continue on, in His time and His will, He will strengthen our hearts. And if our hearts are strong, we can persevere.
Philippians is another of my favorite books in the Bible. It is a compact book so full of deep wisdom and practical direction. One of my favorite verses in this little gem of a book is the last part of the 13 – 14th verses of chapter 3:
“… Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me …” (Philippians 3:13b – 14a, NIV)
Written by Paul around the first century, it still holds the Truth today. On those days that I can’t move without pain, when I can’t read, write or focus on anything but the most insane sitcoms, I can look at that verse and take comfort.
Did you know that Paul has a chronic physical problem? In his second letter to the church at Corinth, he tells them that he prayed for healing, but God told him, “No.” At that point, most of us would give up, but instead of wallowing in self-pity, he made a decision to embrace his weakness. In fact, verse 10 of chapter twelve says,
“That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:10, NIV)
No, he wasn’t crazy. He was saying that when he reached a point where he couldn’t do anything (you know you’ve been there), that’s when he let God take over. And God would always work in mighty ways. That’s the prize that Paul wanted – the life that God created just for him.
And that’s where we’ve got to find our joy when life get’s to be too much. The prize that God planned for us is just over that hill of pain, discouragement, loneliness or grief. Isn’t that great? We must just wait, have courage and faith in the One who created us and knows every bit about us.