“We come with expectation, waiting here for You…”
Many of us have experienced silence from God at one point or another. Getting the cold shoulder from God can be very disheartening, especially when the silence comes at a time when we need Him the most, when we needed an answer yesterday. What are we supposed to do when our Jehova Shammah, our ever-present God, doesn’t feel so present?
First, let’s rewind over two thousand year for a quick history lesson…
God’s voice is so clearly active in the Old Testament. He is literally, audibly speaking to his people. God is there setting bushes on fire, parting seas, turning staves into snakes, all of that cool stuff. God continues to speak to the prophet Malachi, the writer of the last book of the Old Testament, and then…nothing. The Jewish people did not hear the voice of God for over 400 years.
During that time, God’s people were subject to being handed over from one ruler to another. How frustrated, how discouraged, how exasperated the people must have felt. The God who was so active is now missing in action. However, God did not leave His people hanging without a promise or without a plan. I can imagine the scriptures the Jews must have turned to time and time again, the ones enveloped in a big, resounding, “WAIT,” as found in Psalm 40:1, 130:5-6, Isaiah 40:30-3 and many others. All this waiting and anticipation finally culminated when a priest named Zechariah, who was burning incense in the Holy of Holies, was suddenly confronted with an angel of the Lord. The angel gave Zechariah, and the Jews, a word he/they had painfully longed for, “Your prayer has been heard.” Even though Zechariah was struck mute because he was skeptical of the message he received, his answered prayer came in the form of his son, John the Baptist. For God’s people, the answer came in the form of His Son, Jesus the Messiah.
Put this into today’s perspective. Remember the panic of waiting for that phone call regarding the job you so desperately need because you’ve been unemployed for months or even years? How about waiting for an answer from the doctor about the biopsy you had recently? I think we all, as a body of believers, have situations in which God’s voice is nowhere to be found. No matter how hard we pray, how earnestly we seek Him, it’s like we are stranded on the side of the road. Again, God’s Word stands firm, “WAIT.” That word is packed with multiple meanings when it comes to God. “Wait” also means “trust Me,” “be faithful and obedient to Me,” “don’t give up, keep pursuing Me.” God has a plan.
During this advent season, just as God’s people waited with anticipation and expectation for their promised Messiah, let that be a reminder to us that while we may feel like God has left us to fend for ourselves, His ways are higher than our ways, and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts (Isaiah 55:8-9). God has a perfect answer for you. Let us be faithful and obedient in anticipation for that perfect answer rather than setting out on our own path.
“Wait patiently for the Lord, and He will turn and hear your cry.” Psalm 40:1
If you are in a time of waiting on God for an answer to a need, take this time to rest in Him. Be reminded of Matthew 6:34, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Take heart in the fact that Christ, our Lord, has already overcome your situation.
I pray that God blesses you and yours this Advent season.