I’m sitting in the airport…. waiting.
I’ve watched families and couples, groups of friends, and solo travelers come and go during my four-hour layover. Just a few minutes ago the seats around me were filled. Now they await another wave of excited travelers, and I sit with other weary sojourners waiting for our turn.
We usually don’t like it. But sometimes it is a blessing in disguise.
Something Good in the Waiting
I’m actually kind of thankful for the long wait because it’s granted me time to write this blog post. God is good like that. Something good is found in the waiting. At times it’s easy. Sometimes we have a lot to accomplish to fill our time as we wait, but in other circumstances, the waiting is painful especially when we’re waiting on God to intervene in a difficult situation or we’re waiting for something we desperately want or need.
Whether busy and filled in the waiting or longing and empty, there is one thing that can give us peace and help us glean the good in the process. That one thing is worship.
A 400 Year Wait!
The people of God waited 400 years for him to show up. God’s voice wasn’t heard for four centuries. Generations lived their lives in that silence holding onto the promises of prophecy. None of us have waited that long. But for 400 years the people of God waited to hear God’s voice again. And then He showed up.
The voice of a newborn baby pierced the dark. God not only spoke. He had come. Yet only stars and shepherds were near to hear. That was not the voice they were expecting.
It makes me wonder how many times God has shown up in my life, but I didn’t notice. How do we wait in such a way that we don’t miss what God has for us? That answer is found in the Magi. Scripture says that they were trying to find Jesus because they knew a king had been born, and they wanted to worship him. They found him.
It reminds me of Jeremiah 29:13, “Seek me with your whole heart. I will be found by you,” says the Lord. Seeking God is a Hebrew saying that means to worship him. So, God promises that when we worship him, we will find him.
Bible Reading Plan to Help Us Wait
Dear friends, as we continue to prepare for Christmas, and as we wait for God to show up in our lives, let’s worship. Nothing can change the landscape of our hearts and give us joy in the waiting like learning how to intentionally worship the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the Master of the Universe (I taught about “Master of the Universe” on our Thursday night fellowship last week.)
If you find yourself in the waiting room of life, the reading plan and the prompts this week will help. It might not make the time go faster, but it will position your heart to receive what God has for you in the waiting.
Zephaniah 3: 17: “The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you he will quiet you with his love; he will rejoice over you with singing.”
Prompt: The word “quiet” has been translated from Charash (Khaw-rash’) which can mean to scratch, that is, to engrave, and the word “singing” is Rinnah (Rin-naw’) which contains the definitions of creaking (or shrill sound), and shout (of joy or grief): – cry, gladness, joy, proclamation, rejoicing, shouting, sing (-ing), triumph. If we use these definitions, Zephaniah 3:17 could read, The Lord God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; his love marks you, and he will cry with great joy over you. write down God’s truth of you. In the blanks below write “my” and “me.” I’m praying you will believe this. Love changes things.
The LORD ____________ God is with __________, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in __________, he will mark ______________ with his love, he will rejoice over ________ with joyful shouts and wailing. (Zephaniah 3:17 personalized.)
Isaiah 12: 2-3: “Surely God is my salvation I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord himself, is my strength and my defense, he has become my salvation.” With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.
Prompt: Where is your strength? What is your defense? What would life look like if you made God your strength and defense? How would that change your everyday?
Isaiah 12: 4 In that day you will say: “Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted.
Prompt: Intentionally tell somebody something God has done for you today. This is a way of worship!
Isaiah 12: 5-6: Sing to the Lord, for he has done glorious things; let this be known to all the world. Shout aloud and sing for joy, people of Zion, for great is the Holy One of Israel among you.”
Prompt: SING!! Even if you have a hole in your bucket. Turn up the music and sing. 😊
Philippians 4:4-5: Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.
Prompt: It’s another day of intentional worship. Whenever you get stressed today, Pray with your inside voice and outside, “Lord, I praise you. I love you. I worship you.” Let this be your mantra all day. This helps me the most when things are hard. It brings me strength and peace and actually, thankfulness for the challenge that is forcing me to go into worship mode.
Worship with Thankfulness
Philippians 4:6-7 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Prompt: I think the key to getting through hard times and stressful days is thanksgiving. There is always something to be thankful for. Thankfulness ushers in peace. I promise. I’ve experienced it. Make a “Thankful” list today.
Let’s study Together Thursday Night . . . A Virtual Small Group
I’ll be there. I’ll be sitting in my living room with my cup of decaf and my stretchy pants waiting for you to join me. Just hang out on my Andy Lee Facebook timeline around 7:20 ET and join me for fellowship and a Bite of Bread to nourish your soul.
The Promise of Waiting on God
Has anyone ever told you to be patient? A few years ago a dear friend told me that as she had prayed for me, she heard the words “be patient.” Normally, that would’ve upset me, but when she told me, Holy Spirit placed them in my heart as a promise. It was a kiss and a promise for me because whenever I’ve told my children to be patient, what they were waiting for was on the other end. It was only a matter of time.
What are you waiting on?
Worship while you wait. It’ll make the time go faster and position your heart to receive it when it comes. God doesn’t waste anything.
Digging Deep as I Wait,
Here’s some great books for the book lovers on your Christmas list!!