Hopeful Waiting


Psalm 130
1Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord!
2O Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleas for mercy!
3If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand?
4But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared.
5I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope;
6my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning.
7O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption.
8And he will redeem Israel from all his iniquities.

After reading this psalm, I thought about a title for the post and “hopeful waiting” emerged. Then I dug into the text and looked up a few of the words in Hebrews and found a surprise. The words translated into English as “wait” and “hope” both mean to wait. So, today’s title should actually be “Wait Waiting”. And thus we have my favorite (not) pastime brought out into the light yet again. I think we’ve established in the past – I hate to wait.

If you read much of the Bible at all, you will find that it is our place in the universe to wait on the Lord. On only one occasion that I can remember has the Lord seen fit to work on my timetable. One time in 62 years. And that moment was filled with anxious prayer. No, generally, I can say without fear of being wrong – the Lord has made me wait. If I take the words of this prayer seriously, then I guess that’s okay with God, so it needs to be okay with me too.

Remarkable things happen inside of waiting. If we give ourselves over to the wait, with a minimum of kicking and screaming, we may find that there is deep peace in there. Waiting can be a place of quiet and calm in the midst of the storm, for in waiting we are recognizing we have no power to change a circumstance or move things along. We must rest in the place of trust and hope. Remember, hope and wish are not the same. We use those two words interchangeably sometimes but that would be incorrect. A wish is something we want, and a hope is something we already have. We hope with confident expectation. Now swap out the word hope for the word wait. We wait with confident expectation. If I am waiting on God, I not swirling about trying to fix something. I am conscientiously, intentionally waiting for God to move. It is a place of great peace.

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His Word I hope. Love that.

[side note - if you're wondering about the one time God saw fit to work within my timetable - it was at the birth of my first granddaughter. I arrived at my daughter's house to help with the new baby who hadn't arrived yet. I asked God to let the delivery be within the next couple of days to maximize the amount of time I could be there to help. The baby generously arrived 36 hours later. The timing was perfect! Thanks for that one, Lord.]

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