One day when Catherine Marshall was flipping through an old Bible small slips of paper fell out. Each contained a prayer for her son, Peter John. As she read these decades-old requests, she discovered that every one had been answered.
“As I pondered this,” she wrote, “it occurred to me that part of the secret lay in the waiting. Waiting itself seems to be a dynamic kind of communication between God and man.”(1)
Prayer and patience go together (Romans 12:12). Creation teaches the art of patience.
See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. James 5:7
As winter is to the cycle of seasons, waiting is a necessary part of prayer. The earth struggles through winter. Trees become skeletons, good soil hardens like rock, vegetation dies. At the appointed time, the sun’s rays erase all traces of frost. Leaves, blossoms and grass flourish again.
The great temptation of winter waiting is impatience. We wonder if God has forgotten our name and address. In frustration we may despair and accuse God of not keeping His promises. It’s at this crucial point that we need to confirm our trust in the Lord and stop struggling to understand His timing (Proverbs 3:5).
The waiting season will pass. Waiters will be rewarded.
It will be said in that day, “Indeed, this is our God for whom we have waited that He would save us. This is the LORD for whom we have waited; Let us shout for joy and rejoice in His salvation.” Isaiah 25:9
Deliver the problem to God; trust the timing to Him. (Psalm 31:15).
Prayer: Lord Jesus, let patience settle into my soul and make me contented in this stage of waiting. I release the urge to intervene in Your affairs. Instead, I wait in faith knowing that in Your time the seeds I’ve sown in prayer will flourish.
(1) Catherine Marshall, Adventures in Prayer, Spire Books, 1975, 47
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