The Weekly Epistle 9/27/23

Hi Living Hope,

Waiting Room!   On-Hold!   Traffic jams!   Delayed!  “Delayed.” That is the word that showed up on the screen at the airport terminal in DC. It had just said, “on time.” But it was soon changed to “delayed,” as Donna and I sat at Gate E53 waiting to board the plane back to Manchester. I like the words, “on time,” much better than the word, “delayed.” 

I hate waiting! Most of us hate waiting. Yet in a fallen world, we are called to wait. Since life isn’t on our timetable and doesn’t always work the way we want it too, we are forever reminded that we are not at the center of the universe, able to control life’s events. Delayed forces us to lean in on God’s Sovereign control. 

What if we saw waiting as a gift of grace? Trust me, there is a lot of work God is doing in me on this one. As I waited for the plane to arrive, I did not see it as a gift of grace. But what if, God wants to use waiting as a tool for changing us? Paul Tripp writes, “Waiting is not about what you get at the end of the wait. It’s about what you become as you wait.” 

As we pray, we must wait. We sometimes speak of prayer as being unanswered. But is that true? It may be answered with a “Wait.” We think of prayer as answered when we get what we prayed for; when we get what we wanted. But is that an accurate distinction to make between answered and unanswered prayer? 

It is the prayer of faith that says I am trusting in God’s agenda and timing. He does hear all our prayers and will answer them according to His will and purpose. In the waiting God is working in our lives. It truly is a gift of grace and a means for our growth. 

Where are you forced to wait? How is “delayed” causing you angst? How does waiting feel like this massive speed bump killing momentum and slowing down what you believe needs to happen quickly? How might God be using that delay to increase your trust in Him? How might God be using it to pry your fingers open to receive what God wants to give you in that waiting? 

Abraham, Sarah, Hannah, and Rachel waited for a child. Joseph waited for something good to come out of his brothers’ evil intentions. David waited to become king. Moses waited to lead his people out of slavery. Joshua waited to enter the Promised Land. Elijah waited for rain. 

God knows what we need and if we must wait, then we know it is always for our good. What must we do while we wait? Remain faithful to Him. Surrender control to our Sovereign Lord. Walk in obedience. 

Well, this was convicting!
And I need to finish up so that this can be sent out on time!

 Blessings, Pastor Brian