There’s a right way and a wrong way to wait. Our heart will be strengthened if we’re waiting right.
Psalm 27:13-14 I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.
Miriam was 7 years old when she waited at the river. She asked Pharaoh’s daughter if she wanted a nurse for baby Moses and he stayed with his mother until weaned. Moses was in Pharaoh’s house, was educated, served as general of the army, and was to take Pharaoh’s place one day. He didn’t leave until 40 years old when he killed an Egyptian who was beating a Hebrew (Exodus 2:7-21). Moses wanted to deliver the Hebrews but it wasn’t time. He ran away and lived in Midian 40 years until he was 80. Then God called him to deliver the Hebrews out of Egypt. Miriam died years later so Moses was grieving.
Numbers 20:1 Then came the children of Israel, even the whole congregation, into the desert of Zin in the first month: and the people abode in Kadesh; and Miriam died there, and was buried there.
Miriam was a prophetess and sang songs of praise with the other women after they crossed the red sea. She was used by God with Moses and Aaron to deliver the people from Egypt.
Micah 6:4 For I brought thee up out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed thee out of the house of servants; and I sent before thee Moses, Aaron, and Miriam.
Moses and Aaron were grieving Miriam when the people scolded them about having no water.
Numbers 20:2-6 And there was no water for the congregation: and they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron. And the people chode with Moses…saying, Would God that we had died when our brethren died before the Lord! And why have ye brought up the congregation…into this wilderness, that we and our cattle should die there? And wherefore have ye made us to come up out of Egypt, to bring us in unto this evil place? it is no place of seed, or of figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither is there any water to drink. And Moses and Aaron went…unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they fell upon their faces: and the glory of the Lord appeared unto them.
Moses and Aaron were weary (tired, worn out, without strength, patience, or endurance) and had reached their limit. When we feel weary and people are complaining, we need to pray for God to help us and to keep our mouth shut.
Numbers 20:7-11 And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together…and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and it shall…bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink. And Moses took the rod…as he commanded him. And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation…and he said…Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock? And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank…
God wouldn’t let Moses go into the land he promised to the Israelites because he didn’t obey God’s instructions. The devil takes advantage of us when we get weary so we have to be very watchful (I Peter 5:8) and pray to not be weary.
Numbers 20:12 And the Lord spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.
Ahithophel and David’s son Absalom were planning to attack David when they knew he was weary. The first counsel Absalom got would have destroyed David and his men who were weary, but Hushai’s counsel gave them time to rest.
II Samuel 17:1-14 Moreover Ahithophel said unto Absalom, Let me now choose out twelve thousand men…and pursue after David…I will come upon him while he is weary and weak handed…all the people that are with him shall flee; and I will smite the king only: And I will bring back all the people…And the saying pleased Absalom…Then said Absalom, Call now Hushai…hear likewise what he saith…Absalom spake unto him, saying, Ahithophel hath spoken after this manner: shall we do after his saying?…Hushai said unto Absalom, The counsel that Ahithophel hath given is not good at this time. For, said Hushai, thou knowest thy father and his men, that they be mighty men…and thy father is a man of war, and will not lodge with the people…and it will come to pass, when some of them be overthrown…whosoever heareth it will say, There is a slaughter among the people that follow Absalom. And he also that is valiant…I counsel that all Israel be generally gathered…that thou go to battle in thine own person. So shall we come…and of all the men that are with him there shall not be left…Absalom and all the men of Israel said, The counsel of Hushai…is better than the counsel of Ahithophel. For the Lord had appointed to defeat the good counsel of Ahithophel, to the intent that the Lord might bring evil upon Absalom.
The disciples had been busy and were tired from all the work they had done.
Mark 6:12-13 And they went out, and preached…cast out many devils, and anointed…that were sick, and healed them.
Jesus knew the disciples needed to rest but the people followed them. When Jesus had preached, he had compassion on them and told the disciples to feed them. The disciples were weary and had no compassion because they were tired.
Mark 6:30-36 And the apostles gathered…unto Jesus, and told him all things, both what they had done…And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for…they had no leisure so much as to eat. And they departed into a desert place by ship privately. And the people…ran afoot thither out of all cities…came together unto him. And Jesus…was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and he began to teach…And when the day was now far spent, his disciples…said, This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed: Send them away, that they may go…and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat.
Jesus took little and multiplied it because of compassion for the people. God will supply all our needs, even when we’re weary so we can show compassion. We choose if we’ll act weary and irritated. It’s a choice. When people tried to find fault in Daniel, they couldn’t find any except that he worshiped God. The champion bicyclist Lance Armstrong ate a specific diet each morning so he’d be strong to race. We need spiritual food from the Bible each morning or we’ll be spiritually weary.
Mark 6:37-44 He answered…Give ye them to eat. And they say unto him, Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat? He saith unto them, How many loaves have ye?…they say, Five, and two fishes. And he commanded them to make all sit…And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves…and the two fishes divided he among them all. And they did all eat, and were filled. And they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments…And they that did eat of the loaves were about five thousand men.
Samuel was sad that God rejected King Saul because Saul had not obeyed. First Saul didn’t wait and offered sacrifice instead of Samuel. Later he didn’t destroy all of the Amalekites. God said he was going to anoint a son of Jesse to be king.
I Samuel 16:1-3 And the Lord said unto Samuel, How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, seeing I have rejected him from reigning over Israel? fill thine horn with oil, and go, I will send thee to Jesse the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons…And call Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will shew thee…shalt anoint unto me him whom I name unto thee.
David was about 13 when he was anointed and learned a lot in the 17 years he waited until he became the king.
I Samuel 16:10-15 Again, Jesse made seven of his sons to pass before Samuel. And Samuel said…The Lord hath not chosen these…Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet the youngest…And he sent, and brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to. And the Lord said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he. Then Samuel…anointed him…and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day…
If we wait and be of good courage, God strengthens us. It’s hard when you’re a parent or in other works if you get weary. Noah didn’t see any results but preached to the people and obeyed God. The results aren’t up to us: one plants, one waters but God gives the increase. Jeremiah preached what God said but was put in prison. If you’re just looking for results, you’ll get weary and give up. Other times you get weary when you’ve prayed a long time and seen no results, or if people criticize you and you’re doing what God said, or when you keep your eyes on a problem, or you’ve had a failure. When hard trials and weariness come, we have to look to Jesus or we’ll get weary and faint in our minds. He was tempted just like we are.
Hebrews 12:1-3 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses…lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset…run with patience…Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy…before him endured the cross…consider him that endured such contradiction…lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
(Notes from the Mature Class Bible Study, teacher Edith Tolbert)