“Wait on [Yahweh]; Be of good courage,” writes David, “And He shall strengthen your heart” [Psalm 27:14]. We know a lot about waiting, don’t we! We wait for buses, trains, delayed flights, doctor’s appointments, exam results and many other things. You may have been waiting for something recently. How do you do that? Patiently? Anxiously? With resignation, frustration, anger? We are familiar with all these emotions and, no doubt, others, too. But what did David mean when he penned this psalm?
In our English language there are several meanings of the word ‘wait’. For example, there is a world of difference between the frustration of waiting on a delayed journey and the joy of waiting for the birth of a child. As children we learn to wait for permission to do things, or until it’s time to enjoy a special treat, or celebrate a birthday. When we go to a restaurant we are waited on by staff employed to help us. With so many different ways of waiting, how should we wait on Yahweh?
The psalm which David wrote is about giving Yahweh time to answer [wait] when we are troubled or distressed, and subsequently receiving courage and strength from that. “Wait for [Yahweh], and He will save you” [Proverbs 20:22] is about those times when we’ve been hurt, emotionally or physically, or misunderstood; those times when we want someone to ‘pay’! Different translations tell us that He will help us, deliver us, handle the matter, take care of it, avenge or defend us. Just wait! He’s got this!
Ministers are expected to wait on the gifts they have been given, which means spending time with Yahweh to equip themselves to be His messengers and servants [see1 Chronicles 6:32, KJV].
Since the beginning of time, the scriptures tell us, there has never been anyone like Yahweh “who acts on behalf of those who wait for him” [Isaiah 64:4]. Waiting is connected to trust, and trust will grow from knowledge. Take time to study the greatness of Yahweh, His wonderful character, His mighty works. Allow yourself to be amazed; settle into the marvel of His omnipotence; learn to wait.