Waiting can be very difficult for many of us. However, there are things you should NOT do while waiting. Here are 5 things you should never do while waiting for God and what you should do instead.
I started to tap my left foot with my arms folded across my chest.
I glance at my wristwatch from time to time. It has been 10 minutes already since I started falling in line and waiting for my turn to pay my bills.
I stole a peek at the wall clock of the room and wonder why it ticked so slow every time I am in a hurry. The clock was working perfectly fine and yet, it looks like it was broken.
If you are like me, there are times when waiting can be very frustrating and stressful. Perhaps, you also have that experience where all you want is to fast forward the hands of time and simply end your ordeal.
In a world where faster is better, instant gratification is glorified. Technology has come a long way where we don’t have to wait too long anymore for things to happen. Thus, it is not surprising to see that a lot of people are impatient.
Remember how painful, stressful, and irritating it is to wait for your food delivery man to arrive when you are hungry; wait for the car in front of you to start moving when the green light went off; wait for your next paycheck especially when you don’t have enough money; wait for your ride to arrive; wait for your turn in the doctor’s clinic; and even wait for your wife or husband to get ready.
There’s no doubt: waiting has its unique way of making us stressed, restless, and anxious. While the things I mentioned above are considered to be small and not that serious, there are also big things you have to wait for a long time.
Perhaps, you are waiting for the love of your life to arrive or to have a child. Maybe, you are waiting for that big but ever elusive promotion in your company. Or possibly, you’re waiting for the healing of an illness, your dream home, car, school graduation, vacation, and other unfulfilled dreams.
Waiting is really difficult and because we don’t like waiting, we do some stupid mistakes along the way – mistakes that could lead to bigger problems. If we are not careful, we can become impatient and commit sin.
For this reason, I would like to share with you five things you should NEVER do while you are waiting for God and what to do instead.
Point no. 1: Don’t be envious (instead, commit yourself to God)
One of the biggest mistakes you’ll ever make while waiting for God is to focus on others. When you are waiting, you might be tempted to look at others and see how they don’t have to wait anymore because they have received what they were asking for.
In life, sometimes we ask, “Why did God give him a husband or wife? He’s/She’s even younger than me?” “Why did that person has a brand new car? I work harder than him.” “Why did God healed that person? I prayed more fervently than him.”
Initially, being envious seems to be gratifying. It can even make us feel justified and more righteous than God. However, sooner or later, as what Proverbs 14:30 tells us, it will rot our bones. It means that we will eventually be hurting ourselves.
So, what should we do instead? Psalm 37:5 tells us:
Commit your way to the Eternal,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.
The word commit here is interesting. It came from the Hebrew word, galal which literally means to roll. The same Hebrew word was used Genesis 29:10 where it says, “Jacob came near and rolled the stone from the well’s mouth.”
The idea here is clear. God wants us to roll our worries, troubles, and problems toward Him. If the weight and burden of waiting are too heavy that we can’t handle it anymore, we simply roll them on the shoulders of the Father.
If you wake up every day with a heavy heart, disappointment, and frustration because of waiting, God wants you to roll them to Him. We simply present it to our Father and let Him handle it from there.
Psalm 37:5 tells us that after committing our way to God, we need to also trust in Him. You need to trust God that He has a bigger plan than what you have.
Remember this one thing: A no from God isn’t a rejection, but rather, a redirection.
So, instead of envying, feeling discontent, and depressed, commit yourself to God. Not only that but trust in Him as well. And then what will happen? “And He shall bring it to pass!” It might not be the way you want it to be, but it will be the way that’s best for – which is something far greater than what you have hoped for.
Point no. 2: Don’t put matters into your own hand (instead do the work of God)
You know why it is sometimes too difficult to wait for God’s answer?
It is because we don’t have all the details. From our perspective, we strongly believe that we have everything figured out. The only thing missing is God’s approval.
In ourselves, we think that we are ready for marriage, but God says “no, you’re not ready yet to become a parent.”
In ourselves, we think we are ready for that promotion, but God says, “no, you’re not ready to take on a bigger responsibility.”
We might think that we are ready for a car loan, but God says, “My child, you will eventually lose that car as well as your money because you can’t keep up with the monthly payment.”
Remember as well when Saul who couldn’t wait anymore for Samuel to come. Because Saul was impatient, he took matters into his own hands. He offered an unlawful sacrifice to God. Just when he finished presenting the burnt offering, Samuel arrived. This mistake had cost him his kingdom. You can read the story in I Samuel 13.
How about you? I’m sure you can also share a story where you grew impatient for God to move that you just took matters into your own hand. In my case, the costliest and stupidest mistakes in my life happened when I didn’t wait for God.
Brethren, it is important for us to realize that God is NOT obligated to work within our timeframe. He has his own plan and we have to respect that.
We have to wait for God.
The best thing about this, friends, is that we can have the confidence that God’s timing is perfect – never early, never late.
When God says He will resurrect Christ after three days and three nights, He did resurrect Christ at exactly three days and three nights. He didn’t resurrect him three days, three nights, and a few hours. No, he resurrected Christ exactly three days and three nights, at a millisecond accuracy.
Now, if God can be relied upon in doing a great miracle, how much more will He use His perfect timing in answering your prayer, right?
So, instead of putting matters in your hand, what should we do?
We need to do the work of God.
Galatians 6:9-10 tells us:
And let us NOT grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.
Do not waste the time when you are waiting for God’s answer.
There’s work to do.
Don’t let disappointments and discouragement prevent you from doing what is important.
While you are waiting for that promotion, why don’t you keep on giving your best at work? While you are waiting for your wife or husband, why don’t you prepare yourself physically, financially, emotionally, and spiritually? While you are waiting for Yahshua or Jesus Christ to return here on earth, why don’t you concentrate on preaching the Gospel and working out your own salvation?
Waiting does not mean you don’t do anything. Sometimes, God wants to see how we behave while we are waiting. When He sees we are ready, then the sweet reward comes.
Point no. 3: Don’t place your joy in what you asked for (instead, place your joy in God)
Do you know why it is painful and sometimes, depressing, for us to wait? It is because we place our joy in what we asked for.
We tell ourselves and God that we will be happy when we receive what we asked for. As a result, we lose the joy that we get from the things that God has already given us.
Waiting forces us to ask and answer the question, “What is our ultimate delight?”
If our delight is in what we get, then waiting will feel like a heavy boulder that we have to carry around.
So instead of having our joy in what we receive, what should we do?
We must place our joy in God.
If our ultimate joy is in God, whether He grants our request or not, we would still be joyful and happy. Waiting won’t be that painful and difficult anymore since we are enjoying the process of waiting instead of enduring it.
Point no. 4: Don’t forget the blessings in your life (instead, be thankful)
During our wait, if our focus is on the things we want to receive, we could lose sight of the things God has already given us.
It is a fatal mistake to feel neglected by God just because He didn’t grant your request right away.
So, instead of forgetting God’s blessings, be thankful.
Philippians 4:6-7 tells us:
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
The Apostle Paul tells us that every time we present our request to God, we must couple it with thanksgiving. Why? Because it sets the right attitude within us. It sets the right frame of mind to help us remember there’s more to be thankful in our life. Whether God grants our request or not, we must still be thankful.
Point no. 5: Don’t grow weary (instead, stay faithful in God)
Waiting can be tiring. Because we become impatient for God’s promises, our exhaustion may lead to anger, frustration, and doubt.
However, God promises us that those who wait upon Him will renew their strength and obtain encouragement from Him. We read in Isaiah 40:29, 31:
He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength…
But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.
Yes, waiting can be exhausting, but it will only be exhausting if you rely on your self rather than on God. If the source of your strength is you, then you are up for a big disappointment. However, if you make God as your Source of strength, then, as what Isaiah said, you shall mount up with wings like eagles, run and not be weary, and walk and not faint.
So, instead of being tired, what should you do?
We need to stay faithful to God.
Sometimes, God makes us wait to test our faith in Him. Are we simply following Him because of the things we can possibly get from God? Or are we following God because we love Him?
Thankfully, if you endure, waiting can actually be beneficial to you. It can help you develop a stronger and bolder faith. Like a diamond formed under pressure, your faith would also shine brighter after it has been through the fire.
No matter what happens, you need to make a commitment that you will stay faithful in God. You can have faith knowing that God has our best interest in mind. No matter what happens, whether you wait longer than you should be or God will grant your request or not, our faith should stay strong.
After all, our faith does not come from what we receive from God, but from our trust in Him.
Will you wait for God?
These are the biggest mistakes that you will commit while waiting for God. Thankfully, you don’t have to commit these mistakes, but instead, do what is right and pleasing to God.
So my dear friends, stand still, wait upon the LORD, for He is doing something greater than anything you have ever expected. God’s plan is BIGGER than any of our disappointments. Be at peace. Be hopeful. And most importantly, be confident that God will one day end your wait!
P.S. Do you have anything else to add to this list? Please feel free to leave a comment below. Finally, please share this blog to your friends if it has benefited you. 🙂