Friday, October 18, 2013

Courage

Psalm 27:14
Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord. (NLT)

This is a funny little verse.  Think about it.  The psalmist says waiting takes courage.  Sometimes the bravest thing to do is to wait for God's instruction or action.  Hmmmm.

In my head, I'm fine with the first sentence.  Wait patiently for the Lord.  I know the routine.  Give my trouble or request to God in prayer and wait for His response.  But the next sentence affirms my experience that waiting is difficult.  I want results and I want them now.  How often do I ask God for help and then take back control of the situation?  Abraham and Sarah did it.  We do it too.  Waiting is hard! 

It reminds me that the Israelites in the Old Testament prophesied about a Messiah, a king to rescue them.  They pretty much begged.  They were suffering and continued in brutal oppression for many years.  But in God's great timing, He sent Jesus into the world.  Our liturgy says 'in the fullness of time'.  That means when everything was lined up just right.  The Romans had built roads and commerce was flowing among cities as did news.  Hellenization had declared one official language so everyone could communicate.  The diaspora had scattered Jews all over the civilized world, providing a network for the gospel to spread.  Many things were just right for God's plan to be fulfilled.  I'm sure there are many we don't recognize.  His timing was perfect and yet many Jews didn't recognize God's answer to their prayer for rescue.

The bravest stance was inaction.  And perhaps in our trials the bravest action is inaction.  Trust.  Trust deeply.  Trust with all your soul that God will answer your prayer 'in the fullness of time' and according to His will.  Wait patiently, expectantly and bravely.



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