Three Things I Wish I’d Known When I Was Waiting

WaitingLingerInHisPresence

Are you sitting in one of life’s waiting rooms?

Waiting for Mr. Right? For a child? For a new job?

I’ve been there too. And I have to admit, I didn’t wait well.

I complained. I griped. I made sure God knew that I didn’t like the way things were going.

But I’ve been learning a bit about waiting lately. And what I’ve discovered is that although we may hate waiting–God can use the pause in our plans for our good.

This past week I read Psalm 130. I love these verses:

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
    and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
    more than watchmen for the morning,
    more than watchmen for the morning. (verses 5-6)

To dig into this passage a little deeper, I looked up the word wait in the Hebrew dictionary. The word translated “wait” in the ESV is from the Hebrew word qavah. This Hebrew word has several meanings–and teaches three things about waiting that I wish I had known when I was in experiencing a serious delay in my plans.

Three Lessons About Waiting from the Hebrew Word Qavah

3ThingsWaitingTo wait is to look eagerly for. The first meaning for qavah emphasizes how we are to wait–with eagerness and certainty. In verse 6 of Psalm 130 the psalmist compares the waiting of his soul to the waiting of the night watchman. The gloom of the night may seem long to the watchman, but he is sure of one thing–morning will come. While he is watching, he is certain there is an end to the wait.

Though our lives may seem terribly black at times, we can also be sure that God is always there for us. He is always working things out for our good. We can eagerly look for His solution to our problems.

To wait is to linger. The second meaning stresses a positive side of waiting. Usually waiting has a negative connotation. We hate waiting at the checkout line. Or for our food at Olive Garden. Or for someone to answer the phone after we’ve been on hold for 20 minutes!

But to linger is a contented way to wait. We linger over the last few drops of coffee with a friend–waiting just a few more minutes before we have to part. We linger in the sunshine at the beach–waiting a moment longer before going back to the noise of the world.

God invites us to view a season of waiting as a time to linger in His presence. Time to hang out with Him a few more hours. Time to linger in His love and peace.

God invites us to view a season of waiting as a time to linger in His presence. Click To Tweet

To wait is to collect or bind together. The third definition of the Hebrew word is a meaning we don’t have for our English word wait. Qavah can mean “to bind together.”  Waiting is hard. But it can be a time to grow closer to God–a time to connect with Him like never before. Think about it. When do you feel closest to God? When all your plans are moving along smoothly? Or when you are desperately wanting God to answer your prayers?

I have to admit–I spend a lot more time on my knees when life throws me a crisis and God isn’t fixing it as quickly as I would like. As I wait, God often reveals Himself to me in a way I haven’t experienced before. He shows me deep truths in His Word. He demonstrates His unfailing love in unexpected ways.

Are you experiencing a serious pause in your plans? Grab onto these three lessons while you’re waiting.

Look eagerly for God in your situation–expect Him to come through.

Linger in His presence.

Use the time of delay to grow closer to God.

Next step: Write out Psalm 130:5-6 on a note card or sticky note. Add the definition of qavah that speaks to you today. Post the note where you will see it often this week.