Wednesday, April 22, 2009

WFW - Running Ahead

The Beginning

Do you ever find yourself running ahead of God's best for you and winding up sitting on a bench like this? I do! I am a people-pleaser by nature and want to just say yes to everything! Often, though, that's not God's plan for me. I sometimes don't stop to talk it over with God or my husband and end up juggling a gazillion plates in the air and ending up all crabby that I have too much going on. What's up with that?

Hurry Up and Wait

I am learning, though, to be still before God and just hurry up and wait. The Hebrew word for wait is the verb qavah, which means:

1) to wait, look for, hope, expect
a) (Qal) waiting (participle)
b) (Piel)
1) to wait or look eagerly for
2) to lie in wait for
3) to wait for, linger for
2) to collect, bind together
a) (Niphal) to be collected

I have found that when I linger, yet listen and look eagerly for God's direction, I'm on a more level path than if I just jump up and run with whatever I have on my agenda. I must wait and collect myself, though, to hear His voice. He will never misdirect me.

"Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it." ~ Isaiah 30:21 (NIV)

While I Am Waiting

The Psalmist said that while we wait, we can be strong and take heart. This is something I'm learning to do. (See my Be Still post for lessons learned on not being still.)

The word for strong is translated "be of good courage" in the KJV. Chazaq, the Hebrew verb that means:

1) to strengthen, prevail, harden, be strong, become strong, be courageous, be firm, grow firm, be resolute, be sore
a) (Qal)
1) to be strong, grow strong
a) to prevail, prevail upon
b) to be firm, be caught fast, be secure
c) to press, be urgent
d) to grow stout, grow rigid, grow hard (bad sense)
e) to be severe, be grievous
2) to strengthen
b) (Piel)
1) to make strong
2) to restore to strength, give strength
3) to strengthen, sustain, encourage
4) to make strong, make bold, encourage
5) to make firm
6) to make rigid, make hard
c) (Hiphil)
1) to make strong, strengthen
2) to make firm
3) to display strength
4) to make severe
5) to support
6) to repair
7) to prevail, prevail upon
8) to have or take or keep hold of, retain, hold up, sustain, support
9) to hold, contain
d) (Hithpael)
1) to strengthen oneself
2) to put forth strength, use one's strength
3) to withstand
4) to hold strongly with

That's a whole lot of ways we can be strong while we're waiting. Have you ever noticed that the longer some things set out, the stronger or firmer they become? That's us! The time we are spending in waiting is strengthening us because we are trusting in God to work His will and purpose in our lives for His glory.

The Hebrew word for God strengthening is 'amats. It means:

1) to be strong, alert, courageous, brave, stout, bold, solid, hard
a) (Qal) to be strong, brave, bold
b) (Piel) to strengthen, secure (for oneself), harden (heart), make firm, make obstinate, assure
c) (Hithpael) to be determined, to make oneself alert, strengthen oneself, confirm oneself, persist in, prove superior to
d) (Hiphil) to exhibit strength, be strong, feel strong

Note: I may have those Hebrew words mixed up because the KJV and NIV translation is a little different. Check for yourself to be sure, okay? (Always check the Word against what others tell you!)

Either way, I love these definitions of strength. They speak to me as God working in me while I am waiting to make sure my heart is at His best while I'm on the bench or walking down the road of life.

The Hebrew word for heart is leb, a noun that means:

1) inner man, mind, will, heart, understanding
a) inner part, midst
1) midst (of things)
2) heart (of man)
3) soul, heart (of man)
4) mind, knowledge, thinking, reflection, memory
5) inclination, resolution, determination (of will)
6) conscience
7) heart (of moral character)
8) as seat of appetites
9) as seat of emotions and passions
10) as seat of courage

Everything God is working through our hearts and mind while we are waiting will make sure we are on the path He chooses for us and not the paths we choose for ourselves. They may be one in the same and often are if we're walking closely with Him. We just never need to assume they are before tackling projects on our own initiative without praying about them first.

Weary of Waiting

Though we may grow weary of waiting, we need to trust God for the outcome and just sit still before Him.

Hold on to this assurance from Isaiah while you are waiting. I have and it's brought me great peace.

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it." ~ Isaiah 55:8-11 (NIV)

The End

Through the wait, trust Him. Think of the verses above and know that while you are waiting, He is moving. Let it be enough.

Questions for Reflection: What are you waiting on today? Are you trusting Him while you're waiting? Are you satisfied with knowing God is growing you in the meantime?

Verse for the Day: "Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight." ~ Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)

Prayer: Father, God, we find it so hard to wait sometimes. I pray as we grow and mature in You that we will find the strength and the courage to face these times of waiting that You have for us. Let us never run ahead but always listen for Your voice guiding us. Help us to pray about things wtih You and to talk things over with our husbands and maybe a trusted friend for perspective. Most of all, keep us trusting. In the Matchless Name of Jesus, the Christ, I pray. Amen.

T - Trust God to hear your prayer. "O you who hear prayer, to you all men will come." ~ Psalm 65:2 (NIV)

R - Remember His love for you. "For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him;" ~ Psalm 103:11 (NIV)

U - Understand that His timing may be different than yours. "In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps." ~ Proverbs 16:9 (NIV)

S - Seek to know the God you trust. "My heart says of you, "Seek his face!" Your face, LORD, I will seek." ~ Psalm 27:8 (NIV)

T - Take everything, no matter how large or small, to God in prayer. "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." ~ Philippians 4:6 (NIV)

The purpose of Word Filled Wednesday is to share the Word of God through photo's and Scripture. Amydeanne, over at The 160 Acre Woods, is our hostess. Be sure to link up and share your own, and drop her a thank you for hosting this wonderful meme each week. It always blesses my heart to read all the posts and see the photos and verses. This is a wonderful way to minister to others and to be ministered to by reading others posts. Please visit by clicking on the button below.



Denise said...

I greatly admire your wisdom my friend, love you.

The Real Me! said...

I love the way that picture tied in with this.
Big hugs to you my friend.

Beth in NC said...

That was great Laurie Ann! A lot of wisdom in your post.


LAURIE said...

Great scripture to go with that picture. In our Beth Moore "Esther" bible study lesson last week, Beth made a comment:
"Our culture is training us in IMpatience". Isn't that true. If we would just learn to wait upon the Lord! -Happy Wednesday, Laurie

Tammy said...

Love this post ~ the Lord is continually teaching me to be patient and wait for Him. Oh but it is so difficult the end I know it is worth it and I can trust Him and His timing. Have a blessed WFW!!

Joyfull said...

What an important thing for us as Christians to learn, to wait on the Lord. But thank God, He is faithful and will never fail us.

ellen b. said...

I think you hit the nail on the head with the waiting part we really need the trusting part :0)

Peggy said...

Blessings Laurie Ann...Learning to WAIT!!! This seems to be the perfect response to my Father's Love Letter this week. How wonderful is the LORD who works all together for our good!

Excellent verse & photo! Super teaching & I TRUST the LORD more today than yesterday & forever for my future!

(check your emails from me)! Thanks

hip chick said...

Waiting on the Lord is one of the more difficult things we Christian's are called to do. But the wait is always worth it.

Carrie said...

Great verse!! Thank you for sharing. Happy WFW!

godsown said...

Love your " blogpoststudy" and the picture with the bench.....
WAIT don't go ahead!!

I had to put WFW with the Sheep and Sheperd theme.
This theme touched me so in lastweek memoryverse Isiah 53:6.

Thxs and blessed WFW

Cathy said...

Thank you for that post, dear. It is meaningful to me as I wait to have another heart test.

Melanie said...

Waiting is so not one of my strong characteristics! But, I am learning. Thanks for such a great reminder!

Happy WFW!

Amydeanne said...

i'm in a hurry to get things done... oh i rush and rush til lifes no funnnnnnnnnnn.... sorry reminds me of that song!

great post LaurieAnn! :)

Joanne Sher said...

Excellent post, and study, Laurie Ann! Waiting is so often hard, but since when did God say life would be easy, eh?? I always learn so much from your WFW posts! Thank you.

lori said...

"Do you ever find yourself running ahead of God's best for you and winding up sitting on a bench like this?"


You had me with the first line!!
What a wonderful devotional to share!

Thanks Laurie Ann!

Mimi said...

Powerful stuff.

Thanks for sharing.

Susan said...

Another GREAT post Lori! You need to make a book out of your acroustics, they are simply THE BEST!!!

Blessings my sweet friend♥

Laurie said...

Wow, what a wealth from the Lord for all of us. I don't know what you have in print, but sister you have A LOT to share for a lot of people! (I would love to see your writings/teachings in a book:) That may or may not be God's will, that is just what I'd like:)
God bless you.

He And Me + 3 said...

Great post, but I must be honest...waiting is not easy for me. Thank you for sharing.

Darlene said...

Great post! I have a hard time waiting. I am like the little kid crying...I want it NOW!!!
I am trying to do better!

Debra said...

Laurie Ann,

Waiting is one of my hardest things to lean on the Lord for...I'm so glad He is not done with me yet!

Beautiful post from my beautiful friend.! Love ya!

Lisa said...

That's a great verse to contemplate and ponder. Hope you had a blessed Wednesday.

ambersun said...

A very timely post for me as I 'wait' to see whether I will have housing in a couple of months.

I find it hard to trust God with this. Please pray for me.

God Bless


Our Family said...

Thanks for the words of encouragement and teaching, Laurie Ann! I am in a time of waiting right now as I pray the Lord will bless my family with another child. I will keep this verse in my heart so that when I feel discouraged I can take heart and cling to Him! Lana :)

Amy Bayliss said...

Impatient? Sprinting out ahead of God? Oh no not me! :)

I can't help but laugh since I have very recently been learning all of this the hard way. God is faithful to us though, isn't He?

great word!

e-Mom said...

Lol, isn't it funny that we chose the same verse???? Thanks for all of your research. I've been waiting on the Lord for several things... you've strengthened me with your thorough word definitions! Happy WFW. :~D