“…But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
Isaiah 40:31 (ESV)
The waiting place can be very frustrating. We’ve all been there. It reminds me of the words of my favorite philosopher… Dr. Seuss:
People are just waiting. Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, Or a place to go or the mail to come, Or the rain to go or the phone to ring, Or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or No. Or waiting for their hair to grow. Everyone is just waiting.
Isaiah was tired of waiting for God to intervene. It was an open secret that the Babylonians were set to invade Jerusalem and were plotting to drag Isaiah, his family, and his community into captivity in a foreign country. I can only imagine the terror this revelation caused. Even so, Isaiah uses the word Qavah to express what he’s feeling. This Hebrew word means “to wait, look for, hope, expect.” [i]
Not only is waiting necessary, there can be power in it… as long as you’re waiting on the right Person.
Waiting patiently means continuing to work hard but also keeping the faith when the results aren’t coming in as quickly as expected. Even an eagle—with its powerful wing structure—needs to wait for an airstream before it can soar.
But not all waiting is productive. It’s important that we don’t confuse patiently anticipating God’s provision or intervention with an excuse to be lazy. There’s no power in that, and—in fact—it’s the opposite. Have you ever missed an opportunity because you failed to research, plan, or prepare? I definitely have.
Waiting isn’t an excuse for inaction, it’s an action we take once we have received direction from the Lord and have done everything we know to do.
Don’t lose hope in the waiting place. Rather, allow it to empower you.