Have you ever waited on the Lord? In studying the Bible, believers will observe a number of men and women who did—often for a very long time. But why exactly must we wait for God’s promises to come to pass? Let’s take a closer look at the story of Joseph.
In his youth, Joseph dreamed prophetically that his brothers would one day bow down to him. But before he would assume a position of authority to rescue his family and many nations from the perils of a devastating, seven-year famine, Joseph had to endure profound hardship: abandonment, slavery, false accusation, and imprisonment. His early years in Egypt were surely marked with immense sorrow and tears. Yet the Lord was with him.
As Joseph diligently served Potiphar and the prison warden, he prospered not by his own might, but because of the Lord’s supernatural favor. Then, at an appointed time, Pharaoh designated him as his second-in-command due to Joseph’s God-given gifts of dream interpretation, discernment, and wisdom.
Suddenly, Joseph went from prison rags to fine linen and gold as he ruled over the land of Egypt. He declared God’s goodness in the end, stating that the Lord had made him forget the pain of the past. And, after reconciling with his remorseful brothers, Joseph acknowledged that God used his years of struggle to save the lives of many people.
So again, why do we wait? The Bible has many answers and the story of Joseph reveals one of them. It is in the waiting that we patiently learn to humble ourselves and solely rely upon the supernatural power of God for His promises to be fully realized. When our dreams can no longer take place in the natural by our own power, we come to a point of surrender where, as we trust in Him completely, the Lord takes our faith and maturity to all-new heights. During this time, He strengthens and prepares us to be humbly blessed by Him in extraordinary measure so that we, in due time, may be a blessing to others.
We at e3 Partners Ministry can relate to our Biblical predecessors who waited on the Lord. Our missions and church planting staff have a dream for the future: to see a local church accessible to every individual around the globe. While we wait for the fulfillment of this vision, our missionaries endure many hardships: leaving home, confronting vast amounts of lostness, and enduring persecution. Yet we know God is with us, increasing our faith and humility as we wait with hopeful expectation for the Great Commission to come to pass—not by our efforts, but by His might and His power alone.
When you find yourself in a season of waiting, consider the scripture from Isaiah 40:31 which states, “But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” Though waiting is certainly never easy, please be assured that the Lord is doing a powerful work within you for His Kingdom purposes.
In closing, we’ll leave you with an excerpt from a poem titled “A Psalm of Life” by American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.