Derek sat at the edge of the swimming pool staring into water. His feet dangled from the ladder, rising and falling as waves pushed his legs upward. His swim instructor left him explicit instructions not to climb into the deep end until he returned.
He couldn’t understand why the instructor wanted him to wait. He’d completed his beginning swimming class and he could dog paddle. What was the problem?
Slowly Derek’s confidence rose and inch by inch he continued to slip one step at a time into the deep water. The water surrounded his chest and splashed onto his chin. I can do this. I can paddle to the rope. His head told him yes, but his heart encouraged him to stay put.
One of the older boys proceeded into a running leap from the high dive. Derek watched as the teen pulled his knees tight to his chest and then hit the water. A rough ripple sloshed into his face causing him to swallow more of the pool than he’d anticipated. Before he knew it, he’d gotten choked and began coughing. Derek turned loose of the ladder in an effort to grasp the side of the pool. Immediately he sank beneath the surface. Panic rushed through him as he fought to find invisible rungs to climb his way to the top.
Just as he thought he’d never reach the side of the pool an arm sliced through the splashing and pulled him to the surface. “Derek, you okay, buddy? I asked you to wait, didn’t I. You’re lucky I saw you when I did.”
Isaiah 40:31 tells us, “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.” There is little more one can say to clarify that remark. Learning to wait is a difficult thing. We love our world of instant gratification where we punch a button and our needs are met.
However, there are times in our Christian lives God requires us to wait. Perhaps we need to learn patience or perseverance – maybe the timing isn’t right, or it could be we need discipline. One way or the other learning to wait is a practiced skill.
God moves in His own time and because He knows what lies ahead is all the more cause for us to learn to sit quietly and listen. We’ve all heard the adage, “Good things come to those who wait.” Waiting on the Lord may not bring us the instant recognition we desire, but it will certainly bring us into the plan of God when the time is right. Learn to wait on God. Don’t inch out into the water without His hand holding yours. “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.” Be strong.
Prayer: Precious God, forgive me when my patience runs thin and my desires overwhelm me. Teach me to wait.