Monday, January 22, 2018

Why am I waiting again?

On the day I called, you answered me; my strength of soul you increased. (Psalm 138:3 ESV) 

When I pray, you answer me and encourage me by giving me the strength I need. (Psalm 138:3 TLB)

On the day - catch those words. There are times we think we are praying to a "brass sky" - words bouncing back at us and not making any "inroad" to the God of the universe. We pray and pray - sometimes imploring God for the very things we need - never really feeling like we are "getting anywhere". There is truth in these words, "On the day...", for it isn't that he didn't hear, we just don't see evidence he has heard! On the very day we pray, he answers. The answer may just not be as quickly, or as "overt" that we can "sense" it, but trust God's word on this one - he has answered!

Our strength to endure the wait is often what we receive without even knowing we have received it! I have experienced long waits between the prayer and the evidence of the answer, but there has not been one exception to the truth of God's strength repeatedly filling my life and helping me to take the steps of obedience I need to take until there is evidence of that answer fully in my life. That "infilling" of strength deep within our soul is often all the evidence we get that God has answered. Trust that strength even when you don't see the answer, my friends.

What can we be "doing" while we are awaiting the evidence of God's answer? This is probably one of the most "telling" questions that reveals the depth of our trust in the answer God is bringing. It is in the moments between the prayer and the answer being evident where we show how willing we are to trust God to produce the outcome and not work it out ourselves! Trust doesn't mean we don't do anything, but it does mean we only act upon what we know to be the things God expects of us. In other words, we continue to be faithful to "do" what he asks us to "do" all the time. It doesn't mean we "create" the answer, but that we work within the guidelines of what the scripture teaches. 

That means we continue to pray - for scripture tells us to pray and "importune". In other words, we aren't "re-praying" because we think God needs to hear it a different way or repeatedly, but that we pray in faith. We unburden our hearts before him and we speak with him about the doubts we have that are impacting that faith. We continue to trust - even when all the evidence tells us our prayer hasn't been "effective". We aren't "re-praying", we are sometimes talking with God about our temptation to "take over" to get the answer here and now! Just sayin!