When God Says Wait

Author’s note: I had this saved in my drafts to post in the summer of 2016 and in the winds of change in life, never got to it. How apt that the Lord is teaching me these simple truths yet again at this very moment. Faith. Trust. Waiting. “Praise Him in the hallway!”

Waiting on God requires the willingness to bear uncertainty, to carry within oneself the unanswered question, lifting the heart to God about it whenever it intrudes upon one’s thoughts.
― Elisabeth Elliot

As I prepared to write this post, I had all these things I was going to say, all these points I was going to make, instances I was going to relate–but that all faded away in the midst of God moving in my life. It’s such a perfect picture, us having everything figured out and God stepping in and being like, “Whoa now, hold on. I got this.”

And isn’t that the essence of this post anyways? Giving up our “control” to God and trusting Him to be all that He says He is, to be faithful and just and true. To fulfill all that He’s promised?

Waiting is hard. It is definitely not a strength of mine. I like to know where I’m headed, have everything mapped out and know who I’ll meet along the way. But that’s not how God works. That’s not faith. And it comes down to this: do we really trust Him? Would we put our hopes and dreams, our plans and ideas and expectations, our very life on the line and give it all over to Him. To die to ourselves and our selfish ambitions and become who He wants us to be. To live the life that He wants?

We say that God will provide, we might even claim it or use it as an answer when we don’t know what to do, but do we truly believe it? Do we believe that He has our best interests at heart?

Let me tell you, He does provide. He is the great Help in time of trouble. He gives us what we need and only just enough to teach us to rely on Him. That is why He should be our daily portion. Not weekly. Not yearly. Daily.

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Simplicity

I believe that the Bible advocates a simple lifestyle.

Ok, maybe to put it more succinctly, I feel like the Bible would back up the idea of a “grass-roots” existence, I mean it just seems so right. But—

Christianity is not based on feelings or emotions, but on the truth of God’s Word. We are human. We are fallible. Our heart is deceitful above all things. (Jeremiah 17:9) But God is omniscient and sovereign, all-knowing and all-powerful. His Word is the very essence of Truth. (John 17:17)

This post will be my exploration of the topic through Scriptures and meditations to see what I discover along the way. You’ll be there for the journey and the conclusion of it; we shall see if my feelings, my gut, my intuition, if you will, proves acceptable in the Light of the Ancient Paths.

Thus says the LORD: ‘Stand by the roads, and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls.'”

Jeremiah 6:16

So the first passage that came to mind was this, 1 Thessalonians 4:10 and following:

“But we urge you, brothers and sisters, that you excel [in brotherly love] more and more, 11 and to make it your ambition to live quietly and peacefully, and to mind your own affairs and work with your hands, just as we directed you, 12 so that you will behave properly toward outsiders [exhibiting good character, personal integrity, and moral courage worthy of the respect of the outside world], and be dependent on no one and in need of nothing [be self-supporting].”

We are to live quietly. Peacefully. Hard-working, but not only that, working with our hands to support ourselves. And we should do all this while having a familial love for our brothers and sisters in Christ and exhibiting moral courage and uprightness to the world.

That’s quite an order, but one that draws me as well. We all know the feeling after a long, hard day’s work; that moment when you collapse into bed early, sinking into your mattress to rest your weary bones. Not because you’ve been “straining” yourself at the computer all day, but because you were outside, in the sunshine and the fresh air and you were working. Hard. The sweat dripped down off your nose into the flowers you were planting. Or maybe you were stretching for a moment’s relief after mowing the lawn. Or whatever. Whatever the case, you spent your day in physical labor. And it. Felt. Good. That’s the kind of life I’m talking about going back to. Yes, it’s tough, painful even, but it’s worth it. And I think, the more natural and beneficial way. Better for your emotions, better for your physical health (try lifting fifty pound feed sacks two and three times a day…and all that squatting and stretching and pulling whilst weeding…now tell me your extra flab is sticking around. No? I didn’t think so.)

The New Testament church is one of my favorite examples for living an abundant life, but I think I shall leave this topic to pick up again another day. Perhaps tomorrow? (See Acts 4 if you can’t wait for my thoughts on this one)

“Finally, brothers, rejoice! Aim for full restoration, comfort and encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you wherever you go.”  

2 Corinthians 13:11

Disconnected

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I want you to think back to a time not so long ago…

Your childhood.

Do you remember the freedom—no responsibility and an imagination and a will that anything was possible?

Do you remember far enough back to the time when you didn’t care what anyone else thought about you? When you didn’t even know you were “supposed” to care. When you spoke your mind and were utterly transparent because you knew no different.

Now think with me for a minute about the day you got your first cell phone…and when you “upgraded” to a smart phone. Little did you or I know the power of the weapon that we laced so casually between our fingertips. Do your hands ever remain empty now? Are your thoughts ever silent? Or do you have a grip locked tightly around the very thing you thought would save you? I know I do.

I see the problem so clearly when I’m out in society and yet—upon entering closed doors I realize that I’m no different.

I’m continuing my journey today with one more step in the direction that Our Gracious Father and Teacher, my dearest Friend, is leading me—towards freedom. I don’t need my phone to “save me”. Christ already has!

What I need to do is face my fears and see them shining bright before me, their true value in the toxic glow of the screen.

There is no life in a purely virtual reality.

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10

Christ has called us to an abundant life! Not a life marked by dependence on social statuses, constant updates, and merely a bird’s-eye-view of life.

No! We need a hands-on experience—a rich, deep, passionate, living life that envelops us. So today I’m letting go of one more distraction. Cutting the cords, crushing the idols one by one.

I will not waste this precious life that my God has granted me.

And the sad truth is, I can’t even count how many times my grandmother has asked me, “What’s on your computer now?” (In that sweet worrisome voice of hers)

And countless times I gave her a well-crafted variety of answers, creative enough to ward of any more questions or concerns about the time I was spending…when deep down, I felt a tinge of guilt, knowing that I was being a poor steward of my time.

My friends (and “friends”) can wait. The latest YouTube health video(s) can wait. “Research” and blog posts and countless articles, even devotions and sermons, yes, they can wait too.

For now is the moment to stretch our limits and breathe and create.

To be thankful and really see what’s around us.

To lose our technological tunnel vision and open our eyes!

There’s a world out there people.

More than that, there is a Creator God who wants to show himself to us. Who craves our worship and adoration and unadulterated attention.

But how can we see if we continue to blind our eyes in favor of “connection”? 

Black Mass Premier At Coolidge Corner

The elderly are so wise if only we’d pay attention. See her? Be like her.

Solivagant

beginnings

“I will make her wilderness like Eden; joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the voice of a song!” Isaiah 51:3

solivagant // adj // wandering alone

Yep. That about sums it up. This first step to the rest of my life. And though it may sound tinged with depressing thought, it’s not. Instead it feels like freedom.

The freedom to live to the fullest. The abundant life. The life God has called me to.

The freedom to love. To love God. To love others. To slowly learn to love myself.

God has led me into the wilderness, following the ancient paths, to teach me. To guide me. To grant me peace. Only through times of drought can you appreciate Living Water. Only through suffering can you understand the true meaning of contented, Vine-abiding joy.

This past year has been hard. Really hard. But it’s nothing compared to the joy that’s coming. It’s nothing compared to the priceless lessons I have learned. It may have been hard, but I wouldn’t change my past circumstances for the world. I wouldn’t. Truly.

“I will bring her into the wilderness and speak tenderly to her…and I will give her a door of HOPE” Hosea 2:14-15

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