Albert Einstein was a brilliant scientist. His theory of relativity is still considered a scientific masterpiece. In 1929 he was asked to explain how time could be relative. He famously answered, “An hour sitting with a pretty girl on a park bench passes like a minute, but a minute sitting on a hot stove seems like an hour.”
Einstein understood that time seems to stand still when you’re waiting for something. Waiting for an egg to boil is a lot different than waiting in a deer stand for a buck to enter your sights. You “can’t wait” when something great is about to happen to you. When something terrible is about to happen, waiting is often the hardest part.
The problem with waiting
This can also be true when you’re waiting on an answer from God. Time can seem to come to a standstill when you’ve been praying for God to intervene in your life. Waiting sometimes can feel like God doesn’t care about your circumstances. It’s natural to struggle with God’s timing.
The real problem with waiting is that God acts on his own timeline. God doesn’t feel obligated to act when we want him to act. Don’t let God’s apparent inaction to cause you to believe he doesn’t care about you. Don’t give up on God just because he doesn’t answer when you want him to answer. The problem with waiting is that we don’t see what God sees. We don’t share God’s perspective therefore; we don’t share God’s timing (2 Peter 3:8).
Waiting as a test of faith
Sometimes God tests our faith by causing us to wait. After all, Abraham had to wait decades before God gave him a child (Genesis 21:5). God rewards us while we wait on him (Psalm 27:14). You see, waiting often develops a stronger faith. Sometimes God doesn’t act when we want him to in order to develop our faith.
Don’t fail the test of faith. Don’t rush ahead of God. Don’t pray about something and then go take matters into your own hands. Wait on God and you will not be disappointed.
The reward for waiting on God
Joseph was a man who waited on God. Think about how insane this seems. God prepared a perfect match for Joseph. Her name was Mary. She was what Joseph had been waiting for in a wife. Joseph decided it was time to pop the question. They set a date to get married and everything looked perfect- until, Mary went on a long trip out of town. When she came back she was showing the “baby bump”.
The girl that Joseph had been waiting his whole life to marry, the one who he’d pledged his love and allegiance to, was now clearly pregnant! And she’s asking Joseph to believe she’s done nothing wrong. Put yourself in Joseph’s position for just a second… God asks him to go marry a pregnant virgin. By the way, God instructs Joseph to remain celibate until after this woman has had her baby. God asked Joseph to wait on his timing.
So what was Joseph’s big reward? What did God give him for waiting on Mary to deliver this baby? Joseph is the man chosen to become Jesus’ earthly father. Joseph gives Jesus his name. He teaches Jesus what it means to become a man. Joseph became an essential part in God’s plan for salvation.
Decide today to wait on God’s timing. Decide to trust that his timing is always perfect. Believe God when he says, “But they who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not be faint!” (Isaiah 40:31)