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Stuck:  The Waiting Room
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Stuck: The Waiting Room

Tick . . . tock . . . tick . . . tock . . . Waiting. It’s not a welcome part of life no matter what form it comes in. People get weird when they have to wait. They start to fidget, zone out, or all-out panic. If you’re forced to stay put for longer than fifteen minutes, you feel like life is wasting away—there are so many important things you could be doing. Instead, you’re stuck waiting.

[LINK] Unfortunately, there’s no avoiding it. If God’s going to do something in your life, He’s likely going to make you wait for it. Just take a glance over the people in the Bible you think God used in a big way. God made plenty of promises to David—He promised to make David king and give him a family that would have a kingdom forever. Yet David went through many times where it seemed like God had left him and abandoned His promises. The Psalms contain David’s expressions of how he felt during periods of silence or delay from God. At times he writes in desperation: Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? (Psalm 10:1). Yet at other times, David waited with confidence trusting in God’s timing: Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him . . . Wait for the Lord and keep his way (Psalm 37:7, 34).

[THINK] Obviously, God’s timing is not based on our schedules—He even says a thousand years are like a day to Him (Psalm 90:4). So why does He make us wait? Doesn’t He hear that clock ticking?
Waiting means you’re expecting something to happen; you desire something that you don’t have yet. Maybe you’re waiting for God to do something in your life or to do something through you. Maybe you’re waiting for your life to really begin. Maybe you’re just waiting for answers or clarity because your life feels like a big, muddled, gray cloud of haziness. Waiting feels weak, powerless, and irresponsible. You think, “I should be doing something with my life,” but you don’t know what to do. You feel stuck. But it’s during these sometimes painfully long sessions in the waiting room that God has your undivided attention. When you’re in the “not-knowing” state, all you have is faith—God gives you nothing else to stand on except Him. In this place, you are meek and needy. Prayers of utter dependence emerge, and slowly God develops in you a childlike faith and dependence on Him.

[LIVE] Are you beginning to get the picture? As you wait, you’re slowly but powerfully transformed into someone who knows one thing with certainty—how much you need God.
Rather than wish away a period of waiting, develop the practice of trusting God. Trust is usually developed during times of trial, even if waiting for God can sometimes be tough. Writer Brennan Manning says this about trust, “Trust is our gift back to God . . . the way of trust is a movement into obscurity, into the undefined, into ambiguity, not into some predetermined, clearly delineated plan for the future” (Ruthless Trust). If God showed us what was ahead and gave us all the answers, we would never have to really trust Him. If we didn’t have to trust Him, we wouldn’t understand what it means to really love Him and give our lives over to Him.

[NXT LVL] For more biblical thoughts on waiting, check out Psalms 37; 40; and 130.

______________________________________________

Reprinted with permission from YouthWalk magazine, © 2005 Walk Thru the Bible, Inc. To learn more about YouthWalk, visit www.youthwalk.org.

Tim Walker

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