Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Psalm 27: Why I Hate to Wait

"Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." (v.14)

I hate to wait,
I have places to go
I have people to see
I have things to do.
I love me
and I have a wonderful plan
for my life.
I hate to wait.
I don't like obstacles
in my way
or people that disagree
or processes that take too long.
I hate to wait.
I don't like lines
or traffic
or delayed appointments
or tardy people.
I hate to wait.
I wake up everyday
with an agenda.
I know
what I want to accomplish.
I know
how I want it done.
I know
where I want it done.
I know
when I want it done.
I know
who I want to do it.
I know
why it has to be done this way.
I hate to wait
I am the one having to wait.
I don't mind
that you have to wait
but I don't want to have to
wait with you.
I hate to wait
I tend to put myself
in the one place
I am never supposed to be
I tend to want to be
the one thing
I should never crave to be.
I hate to wait because
I want to be
in the center of my universe
and I want to be
my own sovereign.
When I forget your plan
When I lose sight of your will
When I begin to think
that my life belongs to me
When I fall prey to
the delusion
that I am wiser than you
my way is better than yours
Then I hate to wait
I curse the obstacles in my way.
But you are sovereign
and you are
and loving
and gracious
and kind
and mighty,
filled with compassion
overflowing with mercy.
You bought me
with the price of your Son.
You forgave me
and the cost was his death.
For all my attempts
at independent wisdom
the truth is
that my life does not belong to me.
once more I fall to my knees.
Once more I open my hands
give my life back to you
and say
"You do in, with, and through me
what you think is best
I will follow
and when
your wisdom and grace
require it,
I will be willing
to wait.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Psalm 27: Losing Heart

"Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."

What causes a person to lose heart? What makes a person want to give up? Why do we ever entertain fantasies of running away? What causes us to have little enthusiasm for what we once found very motivating?

Your motivation to continue is only as strong as what you've placed your hope in. Perhaps this is why we so easily lose heart in the face of obstacles, opposition, or difficulty. Perhaps what we've unwittingly done is to have tried to build our reason to continue on the shifting sand of flawed and impermanent things that were never meant to be the foundation of our meaning and purpose or inner sense of well-being. No human being is capable of carrying your hope. This side of heaven we're all weak and flawed in some way. No circumstance can carry your hope. Every situation you're in is in someway touched by the brokenness of the fall and isn't under your control. Amassing physical pleasures and possessions won't give you lasting hope. For all of their momentary enjoyment, they fill the sense, but do not satisfy the heart. When you look horizontally for your reason to continue you'll inevitably end up losing hope.

This is precisely why you could hear no better advice than in the three words that begin and end the last verse of Psalm 27, "Wait for the Lord." What are you waiting for? Are you waiting for your husband to finally become romantic? Are you waiting for your wife to finally agree that your marriage isn't so bad after all? Are you waiting for that job that will fulfill you? Are you waiting for life to get easier? Are you waiting for your church to finally become all a church could be? Where do you look and say, "If only I had________ then my life would be_________?

There's only one place where stable and reliable hope can be found. There's only one place of rest for your heart and surety for your soul. There's only one reliable place to find your reason to get up in the morning and continue. There's only one source of motivation that's sturdy enough to weather the storms of life in a fallen world. "Wait for the Lord" really does say it all.

When your hope is in the Lord, when you're getting your inner sense of well-being and security from him, when he's the reason you continue even when things are hard, then you're building your life on something that's reliable and sure. When you're waiting on the Lord, you've placed your hope in One who's the ultimate source of everything that's wise, good and true. When you wait for the Lord, you're placing your safety in the hands of One whose power is unmeasurable. When you wait for the Lord, you're getting your comfort from One whose love is boundless. When you wait for the Lord, you can be secure in the reality that he rules over all things. When you wait for the Lord, you can live with confidence because you know that every one of his promises is true. When you wait for the Lord, you can be hopeful even in weakness because you know that his grace is sufficient.

We lose heart because we tie our hope to the wrong things. What are you waiting for? To what have you tied your hope? "Be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.