Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Week Forty - Waiting Collectively

This past couple of weeks, I have studied, read, and meditated on the subject of waiting. Monday's video included some of what I learned, and we will talk about waiting again this coming week, but I wanted to share one thought with you here Beside the Well because it was something I had never considered, and it challenged my heart. I hope it challenges you, too.

Isaiah 25:9 reads, "And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us; this is the Lord; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation."

Precious thoughts come from this verse. The first one I noticed was the people were waiting on God. They believed He would save them.

While we are all in this holding pattern of a pandemic, are we waiting on God? Do we anticipate Him showing up? Do we see Him at work? Do we believe He can save us?

The children of Israel were waiting--waiting collectively. They were in a hard place, exiled from their homeland, but anticipation held them together as they waited for God to restore them to their land.

I think this element is missing today from our spiritual lives and in many of our churches. We are waiting, but are we waiting collectively? Are we expressing our anticipation of the Lord's return to our brothers and sisters in Christ? Are we preparing for His coming? Or are we keeping it to ourselves? Are we guilty of doubting that God will do anything about our situation? Do we feel stuck and alone wondering if He will really show up?

The other thought is that the fruit of waiting is God revealing Himself, so the people could joyfully express, "Lo, this is our God.  This is the Lord." There is power and blessing in united waiting!

We, as fellow Christians, are to unite in waiting for our God. We ought to draw together and lay aside all ideas of human hope or help, and with one heart, set ourselves to wait for God.

We wait for the sound of the trumpet - and we should be doing that. It is sooner than we think! But we can also wait for Him to meet with us, to answer prayer, to increase our fellowship, to forgive sin, and to heal our land.

2 Chronicles 7:14 reads, "If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

Can you see the plurality? The people are collectively repenting, collectively waiting, and God promises to show up!

I'm afraid we aren't expecting God to show up. We show up. We show up to "do" worship, to lead, to preach, to teach, and to serve, but sadly, we fail to show up to see God. And if we are looking for Him, we are not waiting collectively. We are looking for an individual blessing. We are waiting for our part of the pie.

Let me challenge you to not only wait for God yourself but express that hope to others. Create an atmosphere of encouragement and anticipation in your church, your family, our group, that looks for the moment when we all sing, as a confident chorus, "Lo, this is our God, this is our Lord. We have waited for Him!"

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