Wait on the Lord

By Diane Ransom

It seems the Lord has had His hands full teaching me one lesson lately... that of waiting on Him. What drove it home was my quiet time this morning (June 26, 1997). In 1 Chronicles 13 I was reading about how David decided to bring the Ark of the Covenant home. Amid much fanfare, the ark was loaded on a cart for the ride. At one point the oxen stumbled and one of the men put out his hand to steady the ark. That displeased the Lord immensely, who immediately killed the man.

That reminded me of the account in 1 Samuel 13 of how Saul displeased the Lord when he took it upon himself to build an altar and make a burnt offering before Samuel had arrived. Although Saul wasn't killed in body, the Lord left ... thus, killing him in spirit. From that time on, the Lord's favor wasn't on Saul.

What, on the surface, appear to be simple acts of trying to please the Lord are in actuality acts of disobedience. You see, the Lord had given Moses specific instructions that the ark should be carried by its poles on the shoulders of men, rather that put on a cart (1 Chronicles 15:15); and Saul violated very specific laws concerning burnt offerings, as well as Samuel's request that Saul wait for him.

While my sins of disobedience are covered by the grace of God through Jesus Christ, they are no less, acts of disobedience. A very serious matter in God's eyes. And I'm most tempted to disobey when I don't feel God is moving or moving fast enough. That's when I start doing on my own.

If only I'd learn that when God moves, it is miraculous, it is definitive, it is without barriers. It isn't at all that God doesn't know how or understand or hear my prayers. He's waiting to see if I'll obey Him; if I'll wait for Him to move on my behalf.

Proverbs is full of wisdom about the folly of man's plans. But today, as if to confirm what the Lord had already shown me, I read Proverbs 19:21, "There are many plans in a man's heart, nevertheless the Lord's counsel - that will stand."

Lord, may I wait always for You. Forgive me for stepping out on my own without clear direction from You. I know that YOU will open opportunities up to me in Your time, in Your way. And while I'm waiting, Lord may I be keenly aware of the instructions You have already laid out for me in Your word.