Therefore the Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you;
And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.
For the Lord is a God of justice;
Blessed are all those who wait for Him.
– Isaiah 30:18
Perhaps the wise, seventeenth-century poet, George Herbert, said it best when he penned the words: “God’s mill grinds slow, but sure.” In today’s world of rapid response times and lightning-fast living, God’s timing can often feel excruciatingly slow during our season of waiting.
But the truth is that no matter the wait time, God is still faithful. And few things glorify God more than trusting Him in the waiting periods of life. Here are 10 things we can do to help ourselves wait well.
1. Still Ourselves in His Word.
When we’re anxiously awaiting a word from God, a resolution, or our breakthrough, it’s necessary for us to still not only our bodies but our minds. Putting aside time to read and meditate on His word re-centers us, quieting our weary minds and stilling our nervous hearts.
Father, please help me to still myself in Your word as I wait. Show me truth that would soothe my troubled mind and send peace to my impatient heart. You know that I’ve tried to hurry You, even tried to figure it all out and make it happen on my own. It’s left me exhausted and agitated. Please help my restless spirit. May I be still while I wait for You to move. Amen.
2. Pray Passionately and Persistently
There are times when God has us in a position of extended waiting that our desire to commune with Him wanes. We may even start to think He doesn’t hear us anymore, so why bother? But isn’t that what the enemy of our souls wants us to think? Because then we remain silenced, no longer connecting with our Creator. But take heart, friend. Jeremiah 29:12 says Then you will call on Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.
Lord, You know lately I’ve lost hope while waiting. I’ve not prayed to You as I should. Sometimes I don’t even know what to pray. Please help me. Won’t You put within me a fresh desire to commune with You more intimately? Help me resist the enemy’s attempts to keep me silenced. I know You hear me, Lord. Thank You in advance for renewing my passion for prayer. Amen.
3. Confess His Word Aloud
Biblical confession isn’t the confessing aloud of our sins, though that’s imperative. It’s when we take the Word of God and declare it aloud as truth in our lives. We can’t expect to have victory if we’re speaking like a victim. We can’t expect to have a breakthrough while talking about how broken we are. When we confess His Word aloud as truth in our lives, we’re using God’s Word as the Sword of the Spirit against the schemes of the enemy and reinforcing within ourselves our trust in Him.
Father, forgive me for forgetting how much power my words have. In the midst of waiting, I’ve allowed myself to become cynical and jaded. I’ve played right into the enemy’s hand. Help me to honor and glorify You in all that I say no matter how long the wait. Help me confess Your Word as truth in my life: I am more than a conqueror in You. You will uphold me with Your righteous hand. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me! Amen.
4. Thank Him in Advance
Something wonderful happens when we choose to have such an amount of faith in Him that we praise Him in advance for all that He’s not even done yet. When we thank Him in advance, we’re not only confessing our faith that He is able, we’re also reconfirming that to ourselves. When we anticipate God making a way where there seems to be no way, we also serve as Godly examples to those around us, thus helping to strengthen their faith.
Heavenly Father, thank You in advance for helping me wait with a patient heart, one full of praise and thanksgiving. I want so much to be a positive example to those around me, a witness of Your grace and a testimony to Your goodness. Help me to wait well, Lord. May I give You glory. Amen.
5. Walk Down Memory Lane
Oh, how quickly we forget the times that God has shown Himself faithful. When the waiting has nearly gotten the best of us, let’s revisit those times in the past when He came through for us—when He did the impossible as only He could. Looking back at how far He’s brought us gives us a fresh touch of hope. Because if He was faithful then, He’ll be faithful again!
Father God, how could I forget all those times before when You saw me through? Those times when I was weary from the wait; those times when You showed up and carried me to the other side. Those times when You rescued me from it all. Thank You for reminding me. Help me to focus on Your faithfulness, that my forgetful heart would be reminded that You’d never forget me. Amen.
6. Write it All Down
As mentioned above, despite our best efforts to remember how the impossible became possible with God, we still forget. By journaling what we’re going through at this very moment, we’re not only performing something cathartic but keeping a record for future reference. Let’s start journaling about what God is doing in this season of waiting, so that in the future we will have something tangible to look back at as a reminder.
Lord, thank You for all the times You’ve performed the impossible in my life. Help me to make conscious decisions to record my walk with You—that I would give You praise and honor for all that You’ve done and will do in my life. I love You. Thank You for walking with me. Amen.
7. Surround Ourselves with Encouragement
When we’ve been in a perpetual state of wait for months or even years it can be very discouraging. And what’s worse is we may find ourselves living out the old adage, misery loves company. It’s imperative to make connections with mature Christians who will encourage us and even mentor us through this season in life. Surrounding ourselves with Scripture, wise friends, Godly books, and praise music will not only lift our spirits but also reinforce His love and promises while we wait.
Father, I come to You so disheartened and weary from these things that are hovering over my head and heart. Thank You for meeting me right where I am and loving me still. I feel lonely and discouraged in the waiting. I know You are always with me, but I ask that You’d place people along my path today who would encourage me in my walk with You. Please help me feel Your presence in my life today like never before. Amen.
8. Maintain Our Obedience
In the waiting we may not only lose a little hope but perhaps lose our way. This semester of waiting is a kind of test—perhaps of our obedience to Him. And our obedience to Him is a direct result of our love for Him. John 14:15 says that if we love Him we’ll obey His commands.
Heavenly Father, I’m prone to wander and am losing my way. Forgive me for my disobedience. I do love You and ask that You’d help me keep Your commands. Help me to stay on the narrow path. Amen.
9. Help Someone in Need
It’s easy to get caught up in our own struggles, worries, and waiting. And it can cause us to shut out the needs of others. Our tunnel vision does more than just cause us to neglect others, though. It also keeps the focus on ourselves and our trial, continuing to feed our worry and anxiousness.
But something amazing happens when we make the decision to put others before ourselves: we not only are exhibiting Christ’s love to others, but we’re forced to stop concentrating on ourselves. And like with anything, whatever we no longer focus on tends to become smaller and easier to contend with. 😉
Oh, Lord, I’ve been so caught up in my own world of waiting that I’ve been blind to the needs of others. Forgive me for being so self-consumed! Help me move past my own worries and uncertainties—to get my mind off myself. Thank You in advance for showing me how I can be used for Your kingdom’s sake while I wait. Amen.
10. Wait with a Sense of Expectation
Obviously, no matter how hard we try, we can’t rush God. He sees the big picture and its puzzle pieces, and how they fit together in His will for our lives. Despite our sense of urgency, let’s instead commit to waiting with a sense of expectancy, knowing that whatever He’s working on is going to be worth the wait. Our God is never late!
Father, I’m sorry I’ve been so impatient with You. Will You fill me with anticipation and a hopeful heart once again? Help me to lean into You with newfound trust, knowing that even though I can’t see it, You’re working behind the scenes. I know You see me. I know You love me. Thank You for working out what’s best for me—even if it takes longer than my flesh would like. Amen.