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Waiting Upon the Lord

In Touch / Charles Stanley
The Truth Network Radio
March 19, 2024 12:00 am

Waiting Upon the Lord

In Touch / Charles Stanley

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March 19, 2024 12:00 am

Discover how a determined stillness to walk in obedience to God results in His blessing.

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Welcome to the In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley for Tuesday, March 19th. God is able to meet all our needs, but we have to wait for Him to do so in His time and in His way. Let's listen to today's podcast to learn how essential it is to wait patiently upon the Lord.

One of the primary reasons we get out of God's will, we get out of fellowship with our Lord, we make wrong decisions, is because we do not know God's timing, and we do not feel somehow we can wait until we get some clear direction, so we just move ahead and make decisions apart from understanding the will and purpose of God. So what I want to talk about is waiting upon the Lord. Waiting upon the Lord does not mean doing nothing. Waiting upon the Lord simply means pausing until I receive further instruction. That is the simple definition I know of waiting upon the Lord. It means to pause until I receive further instructions.

It means to remain in my position, in my circumstances, whatever they are, until I get further instructions. Waiting is absolutely essential in living the Christian life, walking in obedience to God, and receiving the best of God's blessings. It doesn't mean that sometime when we step ahead of Him that God will not bless us to some degree, but it certainly is not going to be God's best. And oftentimes it means that we will make a big mistake of which we will be very, very sorry for in later years.

Sometimes it's later years and sometimes it's a matter of the next day or the very day. Waiting upon Him means I am willing to trust Him in this moment to do what appears to be nothing until I hear Him tell me exactly what to do and how to do it. Now, the second thing I want you to notice is this, and that is how oftentimes in the Scripture God tells us to wait.

So in the 27th Psalm and the 14th verse, listen to what He says. David says, wait for the Lord, be strong and let your heart take courage. Yes, wait for the Lord. And sometimes it takes a great deal of courage to wait and wait and wait when you think, well, listen, if I don't do this now, it's going to slip out from under me, or if I don't take advantage of this opportunity now, I'm going to miss it. He says, let your heart take courage.

Yes, wait for the Lord. The second one I want you to notice is Psalm 25, if you'll turn there for a moment. And look, if you will, at what He says in verse 5 of this passage. He says, lead me in Thy truth and teach me, for Thou art the God of my salvation, for Thee I wait all the day.

David had learned how very important it was to wait to get God's instructions, God's sense of direction, and God's timing in what He was to do. Look, if you will, in Psalm 62, and you're going to find one of my very favorite Psalms of all. And this is a passage the Lord led to my heart a long time ago, and I find myself over and over. Whenever I'm facing anything, I end up quoting myself this Psalm. Psalm 62, verse 1, my soul waits in silence for God only. Look, if you will, in verse 5, my soul waits in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold, I shall not be shaken. So when He says, my soul waits in silence for God only, I'd have to confess to you that oftentimes when I'm waiting, I'm not being very silent about it.

Sometimes I'm complaining about it. And sometimes I'm telling God why I think He ought to get a move on. My soul waits in silence for God only, which means what? If I'm willing to wait quietly, it means I have come to the place in my life that I am willing to trust Him when I can't see my way clear. I want to say this again.

I'm going to say it several times. You cannot separate two things. What are they?

You can't separate what? Waiting and what? Trusting. You cannot separate waiting and trusting.

If you learn to wait, it's because you've learned to trust. And if you learn to trust, you will learn to wait upon the Lord. And then if you'll turn to the 40th chapter of Isaiah, and notice what he says in this passage. Look in verse 28. He says, Do you not know, have you not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, does not become weary or tired?

His understanding is inscrutable. He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might, he increases power. Though young people shall grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men shall stumble badly, yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength.

They will mount up with wings like eagles. They will run and not be tired, and they will walk and not become weary. Now what does that mean? It means exactly what he says. The context of this passage is in labor of some sort where we attempted to get tired and want to give up and want to quit or want to faint. He says they will not walk, they will walk and not become weary.

Notice what he says. Though even young people, he says, shall grow weary and tired, vigorous young men shall stumble badly because of their weariness. He says, yet those who wait for the Lord, he says they will renew their strength, mount up with wings like eagles, and you see, Isaiah could not have used anything more picturesque for the people in his day to express soaring strength. That which soars over the problems, over the difficult, is that a mighty eagle, they have learned how to ride on the wind currents. God wants you and me to learn how to do what? The wind current of our life is our trust in God. If I'm trusting in Him, I'm not going to feel the weight of that. Does that mean we'll never get tired?

No. It's one thing to be tired in our labors. It's something else to be tired of, and that is to become weary on the inside. Listen, you can go a long ways weary on the outside. When you get weary on the inside, it says something about where our trust is.

If we're trusting Him and believing in Him and learning to wait upon Him, we're going to get tired, but God is going to renew our energy. He says we will mount up with wings like eagles. We'll run and not be weary. We'll walk and, another translation of that is, and not lose heart, not become faint-hearted in what we do. Because, you see, God knows that you and I walk through difficult and trying times in our life, and if you and I have learned to rest in Him, if we've learned to trust Him, if we've learned to wait upon Him for His timing and for Him to accomplish His purpose in our life, no matter what we face in life, we will be able to soar in it, through it, and over it, and we will become victorious no matter what.

That's His promise. They who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, mount up with wings like an eagle and soar over it all, and He says we'll run and not grow weary. We'll walk and not lose heart. We'll not become depressed and discouraged and lose heart and say, well, you know, I think I'll just quit and walk away. God has provided for us all the strength and power and energy that we need.

Now, sometimes that is a matter of just physically waiting upon Him. And I think over the years I have learned, I hope I have learned, that sometimes when I'm just weary and tired and I just need a little resurge of something to lie down somewhere for about ten minutes and just talk to the Lord and just tell Him what I'm thinking and how I'm feeling and tell Him that I need a new surge of strength and oftentimes just those few minutes of talking to Him and listening to Him and quoting myself this passage, Lord, here's what you said. We could mount up with wings like eagles, run and not be weary, walk and not faint. We will not lose heart. We will not become discouraged. God, we're trusting you.

I will go in the strength of the Lord my God. The joy of the Lord is our strength. It is a matter of learning to trust Him, learning to wait, and you cannot separate your trusting from your waiting. Trusting says I'm willing to wait, and waiting says and declares by the very act of it I'm going to trust God no matter what. Then, of course, he says in Isaiah 64, another one of my very favorite passages.

I love this one. Listen to what this says, and I'll tell you when you read this passage you ought to mark this one in blue, red, yellow, whatever you mark in your Bible. Listen to what he says beginning in the fourth verse of this 64th chapter of Isaiah. He says, For from of old they have not heard, nor perceived by ear, neither has the eyes seen of God beside thee. Now what kind of God is He?

Listen to this, I love this. The God who acts in behalf of the one who waits for Him. Now what does that say? It says simply this, no matter what you and I are facing in life, if I want to get God in on what I'm dealing with, my circumstance or what problem or heartache or burden or challenge or what it is I want out there, if I want to get God in on that, here's what he says, that God acts in behalf of those who wait for Him.

Now think about this. Who better could you have on your side, on your team, in your circumstance than Almighty God Himself? God says He is on the team of those who learn to wait for Him. Because if I've learned to wait for Him, I've learned to trust Him and I don't know of anything that brings God more glory, more honor than to say I'm going to trust you God.

It means I believe that you're reliable, you're dependable, you're who you say you are. I'm going to sink my whole future into you because I believe that you are the God of this universe, you are a loving Father, you do have my best interests at heart and I'm going to trust you no matter what I see and what I hear. Now when it comes down to your personal private walk with God, it usually comes down to this. Are you going to listen to God personally? Are you going to do what He says? Are you going to wait upon Him when everything around you is pushing you to move, move, move, move, move when God says don't even think about budging?

And friends, the pressure gets on, doesn't it? Your peers, they think, well here's what I think you ought to do and I believe this is the wisest thing for you to do and if you're smart you'll do thus and so. God says, who you going to believe? Are you going to believe what you see or what I said?

Are you going to believe what I said or are you going to believe what they said? And so it all boils down ultimately, this is why you can't depend on somebody else to make your decisions for you. This is why week after week I have one objective and that is as an encourager to lay out the principles of Scripture so when you get them in your heart, you get them in your mind, you learn the ways of God, then you can make godly, wise decisions that will bring the best of God's blessings and you have learned to listen to Him, you've learned to follow Him, you've learned to walk after Him and you have learned to be obedient to Him no matter what anybody says and you're willing to stand strong and firm and still and don't move till God tells you to move and then when you move you've got God's best.

That's what it's all about. And so you see, you've got to get enough of God's Word inside of you, apply it to your life and make some mistakes. You say, oh, suppose I make a mistake.

You're going to make lots of them. Let me give you a little word of encouragement because here's a basic conviction I have. When a person is committed to doing the will of God, when a person genuinely desires to do what God wants them to do and they make a mistake because of lack of experience, they jump ahead of God. I believe when God knows their heart is pure, they want to do what's right, they were weak at that moment, they listened to the wrong voice, they listened to the flesh and they yielded to their naturalness. When God knows that they want to do the right thing, that's their heart's desire, that's what they're committed to doing, they make a mistake, what does He do? God is willing to take that mistake and turn it into good. Listen, when He knows that person is willing to learn from that mistake, He will protect them even in making a mistake. He will protect them in making big mistakes when He knows that their heart desires to do what's right and that they're willing to take that mistake and turn it around by learning from it and thinking, okay, Lord, I want to thank You for that.

Next time I'll know how to respond in this situation. God sees you and me down here walking in this world and doing what? It's like walking through this maze of evil trying to do the will of God and learn the ways of God. He's on your team, He wants the best for you, He's willing to give you the best so when God says wait, He has a very definite reason for saying wait. So there are lots of scriptures about waiting in the Bible and I've just given you some of them here that I think are very important. Now, let's ask ourselves this question, why is it wise to wait? Why should we wait some time?

When everything looks like this is it. Why is it wise to wait upon the Lord? And the first one is this, to receive His clear direction for our life.

Friend, I cannot tell you how important it is that you and I wait till we get a sense of direction before we make some decisions in life. I think about people who've made decisions in business that have to do with their finances, for example, who've made decisions because it appeared to be the right thing, didn't pray about it, didn't ask God about it at all, just said this looks like a wise thing to do. Can you name me anything that you and I shouldn't be talking to God about? In this world in which you and I live, whether it's finances or family or whatever it may be, talking to Him, listening to Him, waiting upon Him, checking things, listen, sifting everything through the will and purpose and plan and the Word of God.

Everything needs to be sifted. So number one, we said, and that is, that to receive His clear direction for our life, He said to His disciples in the very beginning, He said, wait. He says, wait until you be endued with power from on high. Now, logically, reasonably, why wouldn't those twelve apostles and those followers of Jesus gave them the Great Commission?

Why wouldn't they be ready to take off right then and start moving and preaching the gospel and declaring the Word of God? He said, well, you're not ready. What do you mean we're not ready? We've walked with you for three years. We've watched you heal. We've seen healings as a result of our minutes. We've seen demons cast out.

We've seen people start believing you. What's this waiting around for? Because He knew that Pentecost was absolutely essential for the Holy Spirit to indwell them. So to get clear direction oftentimes, we simply need to wait upon Him and to seek His divine guidance and direction for it.

All right, there's a second thing I want you to notice here, and that's this. That is to keep in step with God's timing. Oftentimes, what you and I want is what God wants for us. But oftentimes, when we want it, it's not God's timing. And so, you see, God knows that He may be preparing something, getting something ready here, an aspect of our life, that at this moment, we're not ready for it.

It doesn't mean that we won't be, but at this moment, we're not. And so, what does He do? He withholds, and He says, no, this is not the right time to do it. This is not my purpose and my plan for your life at this particular moment.

And so, I want you to wait. And that's why it's so essential that you and I stay in the Word. And we have to keep asking Him, Lord, I want you to show me what's the next step.

What is the next step? It is step by step, walking in His timing, keeping in step with the Lord. And the third one is, if you'll notice, sometimes God requires time to prepare us for His answer. Let's say, for example, that you plan to get married. Well, God may know that you and your fiancé, neither one of you, are ready for this. Now, it's not that it's not God's will, but He knows you're not ready. So, when God says, what? You say, well, what are we going to wait for?

I mean, you know, after all, you're already 30 years of age, and you think you're getting too old to get married. And so, you've been waiting a long time and praying, and all of a sudden, you finally found this person. But what do we want to wait for? And something inside of you says, don't do this now. God knows what you and I can handle, and handle well, and when we can handle it. And some things that would be a joy tomorrow would be dynamite today.

What would be a delight to us tomorrow is an absolute destructive force in our life today. So, oftentimes, He has to prepare us for the gift, for the blessing, for the next move. You see, God may want to exalt you in your business and promote you in some way, but it has to be God's timing.

If you step ahead of Him, what happens? When you step ahead and you're not prepared for what God would have you to do, then what you do, you get yourself in trouble, and everybody suffers as a result of it. Number four, the waiting is sometimes God's season for strengthening our faith in Him. Now, I think sometimes the Lord will say, this is what I'm going to do, and He doesn't do it.

Well, Lord, what about this? And so, then we have to decide, did I hear Him right, or did I misunderstand? And sometimes God will make it so crystal clear, oftentimes He delays the blessing or chooses to require that we wait in order to do what? To stretch our faith. I know what God said, and so in the process of learning the whole idea, strengthening our faith in Him, oftentimes the waiting process is for that very reason, and that is He wants to strengthen our faith. And the next one, number five, says the waiting period with God is often motivated by His desire to sift our motives for our desires. You see, sometimes it may be that what we want is what God wants, but what's our motive?

Is it something selfish? Is it really what we believe that God wants for our life? Are we willing to give ourselves away to the Lord? Is it that we're willing to serve Him?

What's the real motive? And so oftentimes, He just says, wait. And in that waiting process, what happens? We come to Him, we get into His Word, we look to see what He's saying, we examine our heart, we look at our circumstances. It is in the process of that waiting and sifting that goes on that what happens is we discover, well, Lord, I do believe this is Your will, but I have to admit that my motive for it was not right. And see, God wants the best for us. And so what is He always doing? He's always cleaning us up. He's always desiring the best, and sometimes the waiting process is a part of this cleaning up process. Now, so He wants to sift our motives. Now, how are we to wait upon Him?

And this is the next section I want you to notice here. How are we to wait wisely upon our Lord? How are we to wait upon Him? Well, we should wait upon Him patiently. And I won't look up all these Psalms because we don't have time to do that.

We've read some of them. We're to wait patiently. We're to wait quietly, as we said a few moments ago. We're to wait trusting Him. We are to wait expectantly, believing that He's going to do it. We're to wait steadfastly. We're to hang in there and stand and not budge. We're to wait courageously before Him, believing with all of our heart, standing on God's Word, that we believe He has spoken to us very clearly, and this is the way we're going to wait.

Now, look at those. We're going to wait patiently. We're going to wait quietly, not complaining. We're going to wait trusting Him, expecting Him to do what He said. We're going to stand steadfast.

It takes courage to do that. We're going to stand on God's Word and believe that He will do exactly what He says He will do. I do not know of a lesson in the spiritual walk that is more important than learning to wait upon Him. Now, it demands patience, we said, and it demands trust, and you'll have to stand very strong against the pressure of other people who want to goad you into making a decision because it fits their schedule.

It fits their timing. Maybe you're involved in a relationship of somehow that they want you to get on so they can get on with what they want to do, but if you haven't received a word from the Lord, I can tell you no matter what they say, you'll be wiser if you wait for the Lord. Thank you for listening to Waiting Upon the Lord. And if you'd like to know more about Charles Stanley or In Touch Ministries, stop by InTouch.org. This podcast is a presentation of In Touch Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-19 05:43:21 / 2024-03-19 05:52:54 / 10

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