On Waiting…

“My soul, wait silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory; the rock of my strength and my refuge, is in God.”

How many of you like to wait? Any kind of waiting…waiting in line…waiting at the Drs. Office…waiting for test results…waiting for a special day to finally arrive…waiting for Christmas…waiting to get car tags (UGH!) waiting on or for just about anything. And most of us do not like to wait. On anything. Or do we?

Scientists have studied the human behavior of waiting. And the funny thing they discovered is that when it comes to waiting our experience of our waiting depends on whether we are waiting for some “thing,” or if we are waiting for an experience. They found that when human being were waiting for a concert or play to begin or they were waiting for a vacation to start, they were in a happier and upbeat mood as they anticipated the experience. But when they were waiting for some thing to be delivered or waiting in line to make their purchases…well the people they studied were not well behaved or happy about waiting. It seems that as it pertains to waiting, we prefer experiences and behave accordingly then when we are waiting to make a purchase or for something to be delivered. In fact, what the researchers discovered is that overly negative acts like rioting were strongly linked to material goods.

Do you know what I think about that information? I think our stuff does not make us happy. In fact, I believe that stuff only ends up cluttering out life as it clamors for us to spend what time we have taking care of all our stuff. Most of which we don’t need in the first place. So, our stuff gives us a scarcity mentality…which is why I believe our shelves are emptied out before a hurricane. I believe our stuff, gives us an “I need it now” way of thinking that makes us impatient when we have to wait. I think…we need less stuff.

By the way…I am just as guilty as the next person when it comes to having too much stuff. Remember the pictures I posted of my office and desk a while back? Yeah…too much stuff. And here in our scripture passage we have David saying: “My soul, waits silently for God alone, for my expectation is from Him.” I don’t know if you see what I see here in this verse…but even scripture tells us that we can wait in expectation for as long as it takes. David is sharing that his soul is going to remain in a place of trust and surrender to God…because David’s complete expectation was resting in God alone. Resting not in things but in the God of creation. Resting silently knowing that in God’s perfect timing David would encounter/experience God…

I wonder if too often we go to God with our hands outstretched wanting the things of this world? I wonder if too often our disappointment with God is not so much God not being there for us but not giving us the things we think we want? I wonder how much deeper our faith would be if instead we sat in the silence with expectation…as we waited for God?

I encourage you to read Psalm 62 in its entirety. It is not long and well worth your time. David, in verse eight, teaches us part of the reason why waiting on God is beneficial, “Trust in Him at all time, you people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.” Hear that? God is a refuge for us. In the midst of all the storms in life, God is there offering us the quiet place we need to breathe. The space we need to think. The refuge we need to feel safe. There is not one “thing” in this world that can offer all God can when we wait on God.


Pastor Beth

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