Summary: Waiting is not doing anything; it is preparing our hearts. And as we are obedient to God, God is going to bless that moment of our waiting.
Years ago I came across a verse that said, “…and there is grace in the wilderness,” and I just about died. I’ve heard people say, “You know, I am in the wilderness. What a horrible place to be.” Well, there are many times when we are in the wilderness that God can really use us. It was Philip in the book of Acts, who was called out of an evangelistic journey in Samaria to go into the desert to minister to an Ethiopian eunuch. The Bible says that he arose and went in obedience. He wasn’t in the desert kicking the cans and being mad at God for sending him there; he did what God wanted him to do. He went out of obedience to the Ethiopian man and led him to Christ. That Ethiopian man, in turn, went back to Africa and led the Continent to Christ. So we realize that this event was more important than just a little tiny revival. When we find ourselves living in the wilderness, that’s where God can make us and that’s where God can groom us. And even for David, a powerful king and sweet psalmist, so much of his life was in the wilderness when he was running from Saul. But, in that wilderness, he brought forth the songs that we love so much—the Psalms. So before we begin to get bummed out and want to quit, we ought to really understand that God spoke to the Israelites while they were in their wilderness; God fed them manna in the wilderness; God gave them a cloud to guide them by day and a pillar of fire by night to guide them.
Even their shoes didn’t wear out. The Shekinah glory (God’s divine presence) was there. So they had everything, and yet, the people did not come to really know God. Moses tried, but the people didn’t.
Here’s an important question to ask ourselves: Do we wait on God? Some of the marriages we see that are troubled is because the man and woman did not wait on God. They went ahead and got married anyway. Now God can take it and make it and use it for His glory, but there is a lot of pain involved. It is best to wait on God. In the book of Numbers 9:8, “Moses said to them, stand still and I will hear what the Lord will command concerning you.” Here is a guy who is not going to make a decision. He is not going to be pressured into doing something. So many times in our lives, we have been pressured into doing things, and those have been the worst decisions of our entire lives. It’s okay to step back and say, “I don’t know what God wants.”
There’s a story in the book of Leviticus, chapter 24, that says that a man, accused of killing another man, was brought to Moses, and the people asked him what they should do. The law indicated that he should be killed. But Moses responded with, “I don’t know. God has not revealed this to me, so throw him in jail.” The man was put in jail, but the next day, Moses said to bring him out. So they brought him out and Moses said, “Kill him.” So basically, God told Moses exactly what happened and it was okay to go ahead. But here is the important point: Moses did not move until he gave God a chance to get involved in his life. Now if we were to do that, we wouldn’t yell at our kids, threaten a divorce, or do all those things that can destroy marriages and relationships. We wouldn’t yell at our bosses or do things that can get us fired. We would wait and give God an opportunity to work.