Golden Pillar Class Study, teacher Leslie Crain.
Haven’t you heard? Isaiah seems like he’s saying, I’ve been talking to you for 40 chapters and don’t you know? We’re talking about waiting today. Waiting may be one of our hardest jobs. We know the promises and then we have to wait.
Isaiah 40:28-31 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
We have to wait patiently with a good attitude. Don’t fret because you see others getting their prayers answered.
Psalm 37:7 Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.
We’re to wait patiently and quietly without murmuring or complaining. Murmuring is an interesting word related to complaining. It means to say something in a low, soft, indistinct voice, like when you mumble. Murmuring occurs in a person’s heart, or openly in a group, or in private. It occurred in the privacy of the Israelites’ tents when they murmured. Is it in rejoicing, thanks, or something uplifting when we say something in that low, soft voice? Usually it’s grumbling, complaining, and murmuring. Unless you’re trying to get a baby to sleep with that humming or murmuring type voice, it’s better to put the voice aside. It doesn’t benefit us and if the person hears and asks what you said, you don’t want to repeat it. Let’s watch our murmuring. We can get in a habit and not even see we’re murmuring. It doesn’t fit with thinking on things that are pure (Philippians 4:8). If someone pulls in front of you with their car, they don’t need to hear our murmuring and neither do we.
Philippians 2:14 Do all things without murmurings and disputings:
You need to wait steadfastly and enduring until you receive your answer. Leslie was going through a very long, hard trial when she hadn’t been married long and she got sick for a long time. God gave her Hebrews 10:35-37. Don’t doubt or cast away your confidence in God in our waiting. Don’t question because he that will come, will come. The Lord knows your need. The promise said he will take care of you, but he doesn’t give us the time frame. God’s clock, calendar, sundial is not the same as ours. He created the day and the night; he sets times and seasons. He knows what his plan and how all the pieces fit together. Sometimes it takes a while to fit all the pieces together like in a jigsaw puzzle. Sometimes God just wants to work on us a little longer to perfect something in us. God the creator is still creating in us the perfect person he wants us to be. God still sees something to work with in us. It is still hard for us to wait.
Hebrews 10:35-37 Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry.
We’re fertile ground for the enemy when we’re waiting. He speaks in our ear using our voice. He won’t say, Hello, I’m the enemy. Sometimes it’s hard to recognize the enemy when he’s speaking. He won’t use someone else’s voice that we know wouldn’t tell us what he does. They won’t say things to cast us down but would bring encouragement. We know we have wisdom and the ability to question and find the answers. The enemy tries to get us to question, doubt, murmur, share something we shouldn’t, or do something when God wants us to just wait. If we’re at the doctor’s, we may think “I’ve been waiting a long time and last time I waited for 25 minutes.” We may be thinking it’s legitimate to think that way but maybe it needs to be corrected. If we check ourselves, we may see how we’re thinking is murmuring and doesn’t help us wait. Many times waiting is when God takes inventory of us and searches us out to correct things.
Leslie had a prodigal child and a time of waiting. For 6-7 years they had little conversation with her. During that time, she had 2 sons. Leslie saw them but never held them which was hard. In 2007 near Christmas she was very anxious and wanted all her family to be together. She started praying and telling God she needed to do something to put her family back together. The Lord told her to wait on the porch. She looked all around at the porch and went down the driveway. She thought of the prodigal son’s father waited patiently without murmuring but he did go look. She looked to see if there was anything she could do while she waited. She asked herself if she had completely forgiven her prodigal, if she had cleared the porch of stinging nettles and thorns. Had she completely forgiven any hurt from words spoken? If she didn’t, when the prodigal returned Leslie might say something that would harm – a little dig or some sarcasm. Complete forgiveness washes all that stuff away and only leaves love. She needed to be ready to forgive and full of mercy.
Psalm 86:5 For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.
The prodigal’s father had already forgiven when he walked down the road. God was angry at his people from time to time but it didn’t last forever. The forgiveness was always there and there was mercy with it. God is a master forgiver. Leslie checked her foundation. Was it sure and firm or was it polluted with her own opinions, ideas, and requirement. It had to be built on the word of God – not her ideas, opinions, and thoughts. She swept down cobwebs of disappointment, regret, and discouragement. She had to forgive herself and let it go, knowing that God can take care of all that.
Micah 7:18 Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.
The prophets prophesied error. They spoke from their own heart, not from God. Our vision isn’t clear if we believe error. If Leslie believed her thoughts and ideas, her vision would not be clear. Leslie had to remember that God’s ways and timing were not her ways and timing. Her imaginings, hopes, and dreams were just that – hers. She had to let those go and rest on Jesus only. When you’re waiting, don’t be afraid to keep your eyes on Jesus and just depend on God. Sometimes you will feel very alone. Leslie felt very alone but she had Jesus and he was all she needed. She couldn’t even depend on her husband.
Jeremiah 23:16 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you: they make you vain: they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord.
She had to de-ice the porch with the warmth of forgiveness and compassion. It’s cold in the valley of the shadow. We don’t want the one who comes back to hit an ice spot or feel resistance from us. We want them to know we want them back. There’s hope because God is in charge and knows what is in our dark waiting. He comes with hope and light for the wait.
Daniel 2:20-22…Blessed be the name of God for ever…for wisdom and might are his: And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding: He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.
Sometimes Leslie washed the porch with her tears. That’s ok because God said he’d put her tears in a bottle and he hears us.
Psalm 22:24 For he hath not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted; neither hath he hid his face from him; but when he cried unto him, he heard.
She was watchful to look out the window as she did her work. She kept busy with what she had to do and the Lord’s work. She was listening and listening to God’s instruction. Jesus was listening and knew the suffering of those he loved.
Luke 13:34 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!
In January 2007 Leslie felt pushed to do something. Don’t do anything when you feel you have to do something. In January 2008 the prodigal called Leslie and wanted to talk. There were many talks until one day the prodigal came home and looked at the pictures on the living room wall. The prodigal looked to see if her picture was still on the wall. It’s so important to have a good, patient, longsuffering attitude while we’re waiting. If we don’t, we’re going to injure, cause hurt, or destroy. When the prodigal comes home, don’t put burdens on them with our preconceived hoops. Jesus just said “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden.” God was merciful to us and didn’t make it hard to come. What’s sad is that no one, except 3 or 4 people that weren’t from church asked Leslie how her prodigal was doing. Some told Leslie things she didn’t want to hear. People going through bad situations don’t need to hear bad reports. Whatever things are of good report, think on those things. Help us to have compassion for the prodigals and each other! Sis Chris told of her difficulties making sour cream pound cake. Then she had to wait 2 hours for it to bake, but her house was full of the smell of sour cream pound cake. There’ll be some sweetness from our waiting. It will be worth it to wait on the plan and then receive the promise!