|“Why are you so downcast, O my soul? Why so |
disturbed within me? Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”
Don’t you just love procrastinators? They say they will send you something, or come to visit you, or do something for you or others, or take care of an issue, but you can’t depend on when or if they will actually do what they have promised. You watch and hope they will come through. You wait and you wait and you wait.
Many accounts in the Scriptures make God look like a giant procrastinator. We wait and wait and pray and pray and nothing happens like we think it should.
We have many examples in the Bible. Joseph, son of Jacob, stayed in prison for a crime he didn’t commit for two full years. (Genesis 41:1). Hannah wanted a baby, but the years went by and she remained childless. (1 Samuel 1:7). David was anointed king. But, before he was crowned king, he still spent years being chased by the murderous King Saul. (Books of 1 and 2 Samuel). Yet, in the study of all these stories, and many more, we see that God had a long-range plan and waited for the right time to bring that plan to pass. A pastor I once knew called it “the eventuality of God’s working.”
In the Book of Habakkuk, we hear the prophet’s cry in 1:2:
“How long, O Lord, must I call for help?”
God answers the prophet in 2:3:
“For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.”
In Habakkuk 3:17-18, we read that the prophet himself has taken up the word “Yet”:
“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.”
When we “hope” our procrastinator friend will come through, we “wish” more than actually having a godly hope. But, when we wait on God, the Bible encourages us to depend upon real hope. The Psalmist speaks of such hope in the verse at the top of this blog post. Jeremiah, in Lamentations 3, whose “splendor, and all he hoped for from the Lord was gone,” used the word “yet” and spoke of the “hope” he had.
What a God-given hope it takes for us to believe that, after months or years of praying and believing and waiting, God will eventually act according to His plan and His love for us.
Wait and pray and believe. Trust God to strengthen you for the waiting days ahead. Read Biblical accounts of faithful servants who hoped and waited and received what they prayed for from the Lord and be encouraged.