Message from Michael
Are You Waiting Patiently?
David begins Psalm 40 with these words … “I waited patiently for the Lord …” (v1).
Waiting is not an easy exercise. Even though life is full of times of waiting, and we have ample opportunities to excel at waiting, it seems to me that we never really get used to it – in fact, we would perhaps prefer to do without it.
I remember, in my younger years, the agonising period of time between finishing school exams and receiving the results. Or the feeling of a never-ending wait for Christmas morning with its promise of presents. As I grow older it seems that time is speeding up, so I am more prepared to wait for some things – indeed, some things come round too quickly.
David was waiting for God. It’s an interesting concept – to wait for God. I wait for a bus, because I’m either there before the bus is meant to arrive or the bus is running late. I know the time the bus should be there. However, God’s actions and arrivals are so often shrouded in mystery. He seldom types out a timetable for us.
But, we can be assured that God is never late. God never dawdles or procrastinates. God’s ways and timing are perfect.
David waited for God. How long did he wait? What was he waiting for? How difficult was the wait? Whatever the answer to these questions, we know how David waited. He waited patiently. And we hear, from David’s own lips, that the wait was worth it – God is worth the wait! God responded. God is always on time.
There are times when we must wait for God or wait upon God. Sometimes, we find ourselves in situations where all we can do is wait for God. In those times especially, we need to remind ourselves that God is worth the wait.
In Psalm 40, David writes about the God who reveals Himself after the patient wait. I want to highlight just two of the actions of God which reveal something of His character and attitude towards us.
Firstly, He is a God who turns towards us – “… he turned to me …” (v1).
The Hebrew word here is natah and it carries a variety of meanings “to stretch out, spread out, extend, incline, bend.” It can also mean “bow down, decline, go down, yield.”
To think that God would descend to be near us, to be where we are; that God would yield Himself, his Almighty Self, to us, to our patient prayers.
In the situation you presently face – in your waiting for Him – God is near to you – He is not a distant uncaring God – He turns towards you.
Secondly, He is a God who hears us – “… he turned to me and heard my cry.” (v1)
Amazingly, God not only inclines His ear towards us and tunes in to us, He actually hears our prayers, our cry. The word “cry” that David uses here, in the Hebrew is a word which means “cry for help”. God hears our “Help!” God turns towards you and hears You. He hears your desperate cry – perhaps, a cry that no-one else hears.
If you are enduring the blessing of waiting for God, then do so with patience, for whatever He does or says is worth its wait in gold!