Thursday, March 5, 2009

The Meaning of Wait

Waiting has been given a bad rap. No one likes to wait and it appears to be an annoyance. This is why very few people understand it. In the Bible the word most often translated “wait” in the sense of waiting on the Lord is the Hebrew qavah. Qavah means (1) “to bind together like a twisted rope” (2) “look patiently,” and (3) “hope, expect, look eagerly.”

As you will soon see, the concept of waiting is simple to grasp yet it does not appear to be obvious at first glance to most of us. According to the Hebrew definition, waiting is like wound up strands of rope. Those strands are patience and hope. Waiting must have the elements of patience and hope otherwise the integrity of it's meaning is compromised and the experience is invalidated.

Patience is the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like. It is the willingness to suppress restlessness when confronted with delay.

Galatians 5:22 says that one of the nine fruit of the Spirit is "long suffering" and the Greek translation defines it as patience. Ever wonder why God takes so long to come through for you? It is because patience can only be developed during long and excruciating periods of delay.
James 1:4 But let patience have her perfect work...
I realize that this is easier said than done and for most of us it is outright impossible. But don't worry, patience cries out for resting in him so that he may help carry the load.
Psalms 37:7 Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him

Mat 11:29-30 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

1Pe 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
Hope is looking forward to a favorable end result with expectation and confidence. The Hebrew word qavah (wait) is sometimes translated “hope” or “look expectantly,”

A lending institution has the hope that they will get their money and make a profit because they extended trust to the debtor. The longer the debtor shows creditworthiness by paying the recurring bill on time, the better will be his credit FICO score. In essence the bank puts their hope in the debtor more importantly than in the money. We can believe for our promised land because of the faithful track record from the One who promised. Therefore to get our expected end, our hope and trust has to be in him and not the person, thing or event we are hoping for.
Lam 3:24 The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.
Jer 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

Psa 62:5 My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him.
If you stop hoping you will stop waiting. If you stop being patient you will stop waiting. If you stop waiting because of impatience and hopelessness, you then forfeit your future.
Heb 4:11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
In summary, patience must be coupled with hope for the waiting experience to be valid and qualified. Waiting brings us full circle into the arms of God because it means that we must rest in him to obtain patience to wait and we must trust in him to obtain the hope to wait.

Be patient and don't quit. Have hope and don't doubt. The wait will eventually get you out.