This post is written by our curriculum editor Nannette Elkins, wife of Douglas Elkins, our North America Regional Coordinator.  Nannette also spent a year in Latvia helping launch Revival by Design. You can get acquainted with her writings at her blog Hope in the Healing and also at Internet Cafe Devotions where she is a monthly contributor.

Waiting…Waiting…Waiting. You despise to wait. You are in the doctor’s office. You made it to the appointment on time. You left work on time. You even fought traffic, battled for the last parking space in the lot and ran up the stairs instead of taking the elevator. But you made it.

Now you wait.

Why can’t they be on time? Doesn’t that drive you crazy? Have you ever wanted to send them a bill? Have you seen the sign in some professional offices now?

If you are more than 15 minutes late you will be billed for a missed appointment.

But yes, let us be fair, they have delays too. They have patients or customers that are late that put the next patient or customer late…and so on, and so on…

Even though our natural response to waiting feels like nails on a chalkboard, it can actually be a time of growth if we let it.

“I say to myself, ‘The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.’” Lamentations 3:24 NIV.

Think of all the patriarchs in the Bible who went through extreme waiting periods in their life!

Abraham and Sarah – Waiting 25 years for a child.

Moses waited as a shepherd for 40 years before the Lord called him to lead the people of Israel. (Then he wandered another 40 years in the wilderness, if we want to count that!)

Joseph waited 13 years as a prisoner, abandoned by his brothers, sold as a slave and then finally reunited in his role as one of the leaders of Egypt.

“We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.” Psalm 33:20 NIV.

In the Waiting Room we are listening for our name to be called. We learn to recognize His voice. We are quiet, we are sensitive, prayerful, so as not to miss Him. We want to surround ourselves with others who are likeminded so that we are not confused or disoriented as we wait.

What are we looking at in the Waiting Room? What are we filling our minds with while we wait? Is it pleasing to God? If we need an answer from God, are we searching for it in the “things of God” or in the things of this world? What are we “feeding” on?

What kind of impression are we giving out to others in the Waiting Room? Are we Christ-like as we wait? Or are we grumpy, irritable, impatient, letting our feelings be known? “Well, He is not on time and we are NOT happy about it!”  “He has not answered, not called our name, where is He?”

“Show me your ways, Lord, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” Psalm 25:4,5.

Do we realize others see us in our period of waiting? That we are an example of Christ, and no matter if it is a small thing or something of great importance, our reaction to the Waiting Room will have an impact on others? Especially on those that are not in relationship with the Savior.

Finally! Our name is called! The answer has come, He has sent someone for us, and it is our turn. What is our reaction in the Waiting Room? Is it one of “Well, it’s about time!” Or is it one of gratitude and praise, thankfulness for prayer that was answered?

Are we short and abrupt, just glad that it is over or are we truly appreciative and acknowledging the Lord, realizing that the outcome is the result of His hand on our lives? It does matter you know, people are watching. And more importantly, the Savior cares.

If you are in a Waiting Room season here are some things you can do:

Don’t stop praying! Ask others to join you in prayer for your situation.

“Now to him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” Ephesians 3:20.

Make sure you are praying God’s will, not YOUR will.

Keep busy by ministering to others!

This is the best way to give back and focus your heart on serving.

“So two good things will result from this ministry of giving—the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanks to God.” 2 Corinthians 9:12 NLT.

Don’t let yourself become discouraged.

Remember God’s timing is not ours! It may seem like He is never going to answer but He will! And His will for your life is always the best design, give it time and rest in His plan.

“Look among the nations and watch—Be utterly astounded!

For I will work a work in your days

Which you would not believe, though it were told you.” Habakkuk 1:5 NKJV.

The Waiting Room (1)

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