Waiting For Direction
Waiting for direction is one of the greatest tests of our faith. We see a perfect example when Samuel gave Saul a timeframe of seven days before Samuel would return and give Saul the direction he needed. When Samuel didn’t come in seven days Saul took upon himself to sinfully act as a priest and offer a sacrifice before God: “And he (Saul) tarried seven days, according to the set time that Samuel had appointed: but Samuel came not to Gilgal; and the people were scattered from him. And Saul said, Bring hither a burnt offering to me, and peace offerings. And he offered the burnt offering” (I Samuel 13:8-9).
Little did he know that Samuel was just around the bend. When the prophet arrived, he smelled the sacrifice that Saul had offered and became infuriated at the king’s sinful impatience. Samuel was delayed because God clearly told him exactly when to arrive. You see, this was a test to see whether or not Saul would trust God in difficult times. God orchestrated it all because he wanted to give Saul a testimony of humble dependence on Him in all things, especially in a dark crisis. But Saul failed the test. He looked at the worsening conditions and decided that something had to be done.
This is where we fail at times in our walk with the Lord. We wait, wait, and wait some more. We hear the whispers—from Satan, ourselves, or other people—saying, “You’re wasting time. You’ve been waiting forever (the enemy always exaggerates). Do something, now!”
When we don’t see, feel, or hear God moving on our behalf, we tend to take matters into our own hands. But the Lord is looking for total dependency. That means trusting Him fully to do the right thing, in the right way, and at the right time. Like Saul, when we don’t wait on God, we lose the blessing intended for us. We have to become convinced that God always has our best interest in mind.
Why? Because He is our Father who truly loves us. Some believers might think, Well, I’ll just take a step of faith now, do something, and then ask God to bless my decision.
Believer, the Lord doesn’t work that way. Don’t take the lead; let the Holy Spirit take the lead. The worst decisions in life are the ones that we make quickly, without first having clear direction from God.
Isaiah 40:31 states, “But they who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run, and not be weary, and they shall walk, and not faint.”
God promises us a renewed strength to keep on trusting Him when we wait on His direction. Whatever it is that you’re seeking God’s wisdom, guidance, and direction for, know this today: the answer is on the way.
David said in Psalm 27:13 “I had fainted (I would have lost hope), unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” His answer may not be what you want, but it is what you need. His answer is always what’s best for you.
I’ll never forget that day in 1996 when I picked Sharon up from the Jimmy Swaggart Ministries headquarters building in my little Chevy truck. I was giving her a ride across the street to the Bible college dorms. At that point, we had been good friends for three years, but nothing more than friends. That particular day I was having a pity party over being single, so I vented on Sharon of how sick and tired I was of my single status. She got an earful of my complaining. I was 23 years old, and I felt like God was never going to give me a wife. Sharon, weary of my complaining, said, “What if God doesn’t give you a wife for 10 years?”
My first thought was, “What? I rebuke that! You speak like a foolish woman!” But her question had hit me like a brick. Those words were the last thing I wanted to hear, but they were exactly what I needed to hear, and I knew it was the Lord speaking to me.
I went back to my dorm room and began to pray. I told the Lord that day, “Lord, please don’t take 10 years, but if You choose to have me wait that long, then I’ll trust You. I want Your best.”
I didn’t know it at that point, but God would put Sharon and me together, and we were married two years later, in 1998. I got God’s best!
When will we know that we’re receiving God’s direction? The answer is His Word and His peace. When you consistently have heard from God and you consistently have His peace about a certain direction, whatever it may be, then you’re receiving guidance from God. The Holy Spirit will bear witness with your spirit that you’re hearing from Him.
Isaiah 55:12 promises, “For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace.”