Alistair Begg Devotional Waiting on God

Waiting on God

Waiting on God

Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!

Do you enjoy waiting? Most of us, if we’re prepared to be honest, would answer with an emphatic “No!” We need only to sit and wait for somebody to reverse out of a parking space to be reminded of how impatient we really are. Usually, we desire that our needs be met according to our timetable, and modern life teaches us that this is a fair demand. And yet this lack of patience poses a major problem for the Christian—because if we find it difficult to wait, we’re going to find it very difficult to walk by faith.

In the Bible, we often see faith demonstrated as men and women wait on the promises of God. (See, for instance, Romans 4.) Indeed, God’s “precious and very great promises” (2 Peter 1:4) are seldom given with any kind of time guarantee. This makes all the difference in the world. Most of us can muster up the ability to wait if we know that we only have to wait until next Friday, or until five o’clock, or whenever. But that is not waiting in faith. Rather, Scripture exhorts us to wait not on a specific time but on the faithfulness of the one who promises—namely, God Himself.

If we are in need of strength—strength to endure illness, to resist temptation, to show kindness to a challenging coworker—and we turn to the Scriptures for encouragement, we discover that “they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength” (Isaiah 40:31). Likewise, at the birth of the church, the word of Christ to the disciples was that they should wait in Jerusalem “for the promise of the Father” (Acts 1:4). In the same way, we are called to wait “for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:13). The Bible tells us to wait, to watch, to pray, to look, and to be ready, not with a knowledge of the timeframe but with the knowledge that God is faithful.

You likely know what it is to have your character tested in faith’s waiting room. Remember that genuine faith involves waiting, and it requires that we wait not on external circumstances but on our God, who sees His people and who “acts for those who wait for him” (Isaiah 64:4). Let that build patience within you, both for the waiting times in this life and as you wait for the Lord to return and bring you into the glory of your eternal life.

Questions for Thought

How is God calling me to think differently?

How is God reordering my heart’s affections — what I love?

What is God calling me to do as I go about my day today?

Further Reading

The Promise Realized Through Faith

13For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith. 14For if it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. 15For the law brings wrath, but where there is no law there is no transgression.

16That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, 17as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist. 18In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.” 19He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness3 of Sarah's womb. 20No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, 21fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. 22That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.” 23But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, 24but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, 25who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.

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3 4:19 Greek deadness

Devotional material is taken from the Truth For Life daily devotionals by Alistair Begg, published by The Good Book Company, Used by Truth For Life with permission. Copyright © 2021, 2022, The Good Book Company.

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