Those who sit in the gate speak against me, And I am the song of the drunkards. But as for me, my prayer is to You, O Lord, in the acceptable time; O God, in the multitude of Your mercy, Hear me in the truth of Your salvation. Deliver me out of the mire, and let me not sink; Let me be delivered from those who hate me, And out of the deep waters.
He had prayed for a wife for a long time. As his friends began to couple up in their mid-to-late twenties, he had yet to find the one for him. Years of searching turned into throwing his hands up and simply asking God to bring whoever was right for him. He thought perhaps the problem was that he was being led by his own idea of who would be the right fit for him instead of God’s idea. That prayer, however, did not produce fruit for even more years. When he finally met the woman who would be his wife he had reached middle age, but it did not take him long to understand why that prayer took years to answer. The day they met came only one week after her feet first touched down on American soil.
We cannot pray to God effectively without understanding the difference between his timing and ours. Really, the only thing to understand is that these two things can be very different. In fact, there are times when God does not seem to answer a prayer at all. In those instances, the answer simply might be “no.” Regardless of the reason for waiting, the prayer made in faith is also made in confidence that God’s timing and answer have to be perfect. Sometimes we must wait because of ourselves, and sometimes we must wait because of some external circumstances. Our vision is limited, and these periods can be frustrating and difficult to endure. If our hearts are truly chasing after God’s, we will find a way to wait it out faithfully.
Patient waiting cannot be accomplished without confidence. We must have confidence that God’s will and way are perfect. We must have confidence that God does not allow or cause us to endure anything which is not spiritually beneficial for us. We must have confidence that our Father in heaven knows how to give good gifts and also care for his children. With this solid foundation of trust, we can be open to whatever time of waiting is needed to accomplish what it is meant to accomplish. At a minimum it should be stirring our faith as we persist in prayer and continually seek the face of God. Father, give us the confidence and faith to wait patiently for You knowing that your timing is perfect and always for our good.