Daily Devotional for Wednesday November 20, 2013
What to Do while Waiting for God to Answer Your Prayer
(Isaiah 45:9; Romans 9:21)
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, I was wondering if it is acceptable for believers to do yoga as part of exercising?
ANSWER: With a million ways to exercise, why get involved in something that has its' roots in New Age mysticism?
I have a very practical word for you today since it deals with an issue we all struggle with. Every person reading this today has some unanswered prayers that you are waiting for God to answer. For some, it may be a prayer about finances, for others, it may be a prayer about healing, and for still others, it may be a prayer regarding your marriage. No matter what the specific need is, everyone who is reading these words today has something you are praying about and are waiting on God to answer.
The biggest mistake I see people make who are waiting on God for an answer is they start drifting away from God. When you are waiting on God to answer you, that is the time to press into God, not pull away from God. But we humans are impatient. Especially in 2013 when we have our cell phones, FedEx, drive-thru food, and SmartPhones, we don't want to wait even one second for ANYTHING. That includes having our prayers answered! So we get impatient when God doesn't respond to our prayers like he is our personal concierge, our "gofer," our assistant who we give our "to do" list to in the morning and expect it completed by 5.
This just in, God is the CREATOR, we are HIS CREATION! Does the clay tell the potter what to do? God in His infinite grace and mercy allows us to bring our petitions to Him, gives us unlimited access to His throne room to share our hearts' desires, but that doesn't mean God is obligated to answer our prayers the way we want or in the time we want. A thousand years is as a day to the Almighty. While waiting an hour, a day, a week, a month, even a year may seem like a LONG TIME to us, it is the blink of an eye in relationship to eternity. The fact is, God is not bound by time/space as we are.
However, when God does not respond in our timing, we get mad at God. We blame whatever we are facing on God for not stepping in as we had requested. We stop reading the Word every day. We stop praying every day. We stop going to church. We start slowly drifting away from God and soon we get far enough away from Him that we become an easy target for satan.
We know, of course, satan is a liar, the father of lies. He lies to us that God really doesn't love us or He would have answered our prayer by now. He lies to us that God has more important things to do than worry about our needs. He lies to us that we have sinned too much to be worthy of God answering our prayers. He lies to us that we are fools to believe God could answer our prayers even if He wanted to.
During this time we face the daily temptations life brings our way and in our weakened state we give in to the temptation. We end up having an affair. We end up drinking. We end up gambling. We end up doing drugs. We end up being mean to our spouse and children. We end up making poor choices because we drifted from God and wake up one morning and find ourselves in real trouble.
It is at this point that we make our way back to the Lord. Like the prodigal son we humble ourselves and ask for forgiveness. We get back into our daily discipline of praying and reading the Word. We get back into church on a regular basis. We rekindle our close, daily, intimate relationship with the Lord. God is merciful as He not only forgives us and welcomes us back home, but He helps us to overcome the damage we have done during the time we were away.
Let me share with you today what you should be dong while you are waiting for God to answer you. You press in even closer to the Lord! While you are waiting for God to respond, you keep praying every day, pray even more. While you are waiting on God to respond, you keep reading the Word, read even more. While you are waiting on God to respond, you keep going to church, go even more. WHILE YOU ARE WAITING ON GOD TO RESPOND YOU CONTINUE TO BE ABOUT YOUR FATHERS BUSINESS, SINCE, AS YOU ARE ABOUT HIS BUSINESS HE WILL BE ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS!
There is your priceless gem for the day. Read it again. Read it over and over. WHILE YOU ARE WAITING ON GOD TO RESPOND YOU CONTINUE TO BE ABOUT YOUR FATHERS BUSINESS, SINCE, AS YOU ARE ABOUT HIS BUSINESS HE WILL BE ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS!
I love you and care about you so much. I know many of you today are living on life's edge because you have great needs you have brought to God and are simply waiting on Him to respond. While satan will fill you with his lies, let me give you some TRUTH today. God loves you so much. God cares about you and everything that goes on in your life. God is your hope and rock in the good times and bad. God hears your cries. God is able to meet every need you will ever have in this life. God's timing is not our timing, but God is never too early or too late.
I know how frustrated you are waiting for God to respond. The key to finding peace as you wait is to know that God knows you and your needs better than you do. Press into the Lord during this time you are waiting. Be about Gods' business. Keep serving Him faithfully. As you are obedient and faithful in your service, you will wake up one day and realize God has responded. It may not be the exact way you wanted, it may not be the exact answer you wanted, but God will respond.
I will be praying for you today. Praying for you to stay strong in the midst of whatever your battles may be. Praying for you to find God's peace during your trials. Never forget that He loves you and cares about you so much and is with you always. He has not abandoned you, not forsaken you, but is with you each step of the way. Keep your eyes focused on the Lord, continue to be about His business, and know that in His perfect timing God will respond!
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,