In this long-but-necessary-grueling-at-times-Lord-please-get-me-outta-here, waiting season, God reminded me of this verse:
“Dear brothers and sisters, be patient as you wait for the Lord’s return. Consider the farmers who patiently wait for the rains in the fall and in the spring. They eagerly look for the valuable harvest to ripen.” (James 5:7)
I love how the NLT version says, “They eagerly look for the valuable harvest to ripen.” They patiently wait for the good fruit. The ready fruit. The mature fruit. In context, this verse is talking about waiting for Jesus to return, which we eagerly await and hope for. I believe we can take great comfort in this verse when waiting for all things.
No one enjoys waiting and it’s especially difficult to wait when everything is microwave ready and instantly at our fingertips, but waiting is necessary for our growth as it tests our faith. James 1:2-8 says, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”
Throughout the bible, God puts a lot of emphasis on steadfastness because He is steadfast and He desires that we become like Him in all things. It’s so easy to give up or rush into something or in some cases, rush out of something because we’re impatient. We just want what we want and we want it now. It’s so important that we wait on the Lord because what He has for us is good and perfect, and He will provide what He has promised at the right time – His time.
God loves you and He has good plans for you. His thoughts are higher than ours and His ways are higher than ours (Isaiah 55:9). He is Lord of all. He knows what’s best for us. He wouldn’t make us wait if there wasn’t good reason. There is purpose in the waiting. Maybe He is testing your faith, developing your character, teaching you obedience or steadfastness or all of the above. He is preparing you so that you will be good fruit. Selah
He is preparing your blessing so that you will be a blessing, but that’s a message for another day.
Whatever it is that you are waiting for; I encourage you (and myself) to wait for the good fruit. Wait for God’s best, not what you think is best. We don’t want to prematurely receive our blessing and not be prepared for it and jack it up. If God is teaching us a lesson and we move too quickly we’ll have to relearn that lesson all over again, and in some cases, it’s a much more difficult situation. But don’t lose heart, beloved, the waiting season doesn’t have to miserable. It can be full of life, hope, joy and freedom as we fix our eyes on the prize – Jesus; trusting Him to work everything out.
Here are 3 things you can do to help you wait well:
Worship while you’re waiting – It’s so easy to focus on the things we don’t have, but if we change our perspective by fixing our eyes on Jesus we will grow in contentment and gratitude, remembering all that the Lord has done for us. God is worthy to be praised in every season. God doesn’t owe us anything, but He has given us everything in Jesus and yet, He blesses us with more. He’s so good!
Pray while you’re waiting – Talk to Jesus. Bring your concerns and troubles to Him and allow Him to comfort, guide and teach you. Ask God what He wants you to be doing in this season and how you can prepare for whatever is it that you are waiting for. Use this time to grow closer to God. Seek His face, not His hand (Matthew 6:33). Ask God to give you His perspective and His heart regarding your situation. He will always help you. He will never ever leave you.
Be joyful while you’re waiting – You have to make a conscious, daily decision to choose to be joyful and grateful no matter what. Don’t let anyone or anything steal your joy. Don’t give yourself over to complaining about your circumstance. Instead, in faith, speak life over your situation and trust God to handle it. Remember, happiness is based on circumstance, but Joy is in the Lord. You don’t have to wait until you receive what you’re waiting for to have joy. Joy is for you right now. Choose it. Take hold of it. Take hold of Jesus.
Remember, Jesus is our greatest reward. Greater than what we’re waiting for. Keeping seeking Him, trusting Him and allowing Him to develop and prepare you for the good fruit.