Waiting Is Key to Following

Agitated, I stood and strode down the long corridor to scout out the main passenger lounge. No new shops or kiosks had been built. No new services were being offered. It was as it had been every other time I had visited that day. It was a very disappointing distraction. The authorities had first delayed my flight and then postponed it; I was waiting and not patiently.

I don’t like waiting. It is an activity that is really no activity at all. It grates and grinds against my preference to be moving, moving on to the next thing or place or task. Waiting is what you do when you are not in control of the schedule, when you can’t move on when you want.

We aren’t much different when it comes to our spiritual lives. We don’t like to wait, it makes us restless. Being in control is what we like, to be free to move on, to set the pace, the place or the pastime. Yes, we know that Jesus commanded us to follow, but surely he didn’t mean to wait for him to lead did he?

One of the last commands he gave to his first disciples was to ‘wait for the gift my Father promised’ (Acts 1:4). This gift was the Holy Spirit, another Advocate, who will guide believers into all truth (Jn 16:13). We must wait and follow so that the Spirit can guide. But it is hard to follow when we are out front moving on with our own agenda.

The Apostle Paul captures “waiting and following” this way:

Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (Gal 5:25)

What makes it hard for you to wait on the Spirit’s leading? What helps you keep in step with the Spirit?

One Comment

  1. I wouldn’t like to add up the hours that I have had to ‘wait’ in my lifetime. Wait for doctor, wait for something to finish cooking, wait for another person to catch up, wait for help, wait in a line-up, waiting for a special event, wait for a flight or ferry – and the list goes on. I want to be ‘doing’ something.
    I recall a quote about ‘the tyrany of the urgent’. – ‘letting the urgent things crowd out the important’. God says that ‘being still’ is important. ‘ Sometimes the noises of our lives – our many activities, hectic schedules, high tech distractions – drown out the voice of God.’ Waiting and Listening to His ‘still small voice’ is important.
    I just need to be reminded about the importance of waiting quietly and that waiting isn’t a waste of time.

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