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How to Wait Well | Abraham And Sarah

If I can be candid with y’all, I hate waiting. I feel like I’m honestly bad at it. I’m the one with the “road rage” label in my friend group. I believe the way to solve a lot of the traffic issues is to have the slow people stay in the right lane, or I build the car from the old Inspector Gadget movie. (If you are not a 90s kid, do a quick Google search.) There are two main reasons why I think I’m bad at waiting. My first reason is that it is frustrating. It is like putting all my plans, goals, and dreams on hold. Which means delaying my process and increasing the time it would take. While driving, sitting in traffic, or driving behind someone slow will cause you to reach your destination later. My second reason is that I don’t know how to respond to it. I don’t know what to do in the meantime. The funny thing is if I knew how to respond to waiting, I know it would positively impact my view of waiting.

Do you feel like you are failing in the waiting season God has you in? Do you feel lost and confused about what to do now? I promise you are not alone. In this series, we will look at the different waiting seasons people went through in the Bible and together find some gems that can help us wait well in our own waiting season. Let’s start with Abraham and Sarah’s waiting season Genesis 15-22. As many people know, they waited 25 years for their son Isaac. Let me repeat that…. waited 25 years! Then on top of that, we were already old when God made that promise to them…. now add 25 years. Can I say #strugglelife?

Disclaimer: I am not a Bible professor or teacher. I do not have a degree in biblical theology. I am sharing my thoughts and what God has laid on my heart.

Our mindset determines how we respond.

During these 25 years, we see two responses from Sarah that I want to talk about. The first is when she decided to take matters into her hands and allowed Abraham to have a child through her maid, which was not God’s plan (Genesis 16). The second is when she literally laughed in God’s face when He mentioned fulfilling His promise, which God confronted her with (Genesis 18). If this is how Sarah responded, what was her mindset about God’s promise? Was she doubting it would actually happen? Because of the long wait, did she believe God needed her help to fulfill His promise? Or waiting year after year, did her disappointment steal her trust in God?

I can testify that my mindset towards my singleness determined how I responded to it. When I was scared and didn’t understand, I tried to find the quickest way out of it by taking matters into my own hands. Just like Sarah, it didn’t bring me closer to God’s will and caused me to be even more frustrated. If we have a negative mindset towards our waiting season, we are more likely to respond as Sarah did. Our words and actions are evidence of what we believe God can do. We must align our mindset with God’s will, especially if we do not understand what He is doing.

The desire can not be an idol.

Let’s take a look at Genesis 22. At this point, God had already blessed Abraham and Sarah with Isaac, the promised son. In chapter 22, God tells Abraham to sacrifice Isaac to Him. Now, when I say sacrifice… I mean killing him on an altar as an offering to the Lord. Can you imagine a knife in your hand about to sacrifice the very blessing God promised to give to you and what you waited 25 years for? (SPOILER ALERT: Abraham did not kill Isaac.)

Here is the question: Are you willing to sacrifice your desire for God? I know that stings, but I want you to sit with it for a moment. What if God did says no? How would you respond? We can get so self-centered in our waiting season that the blessing is desired more than the Blesser. The Bible says:

Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Exodus 20:3 (KJV)

This means anything (person, place, thing, or idea) that we put before God. This can be a desire for marriage, a spouse, a job, social media, a desire to have a child &, etc. Whatever we are waiting for, it can not be more important than God in our lives. We have to have the mindset of Abraham and be willing to give it to the Lord if that is His will. It should not be off-limits.

God does not bless us because we are perfect.

After trying to fulfill God’s promise on their own and laughing in God’s face about having a son, God still blessed Abraham and Sarah with Isaac in Genesis 21. Sometimes, we can think that if we pray a certain way, show up for all the church services, and serve at every event, it will somehow ensure our blessing will come. This is a performance-driven mindset. God blesses us, His children, out of His goodness, not based on our performance. We can not do anything to earn or deserve blessings from God. I want to encourage you to stop striving and trust that God is good, faithful, and will give you the best.

In my own waiting season, I found that a positive mindset is essential to waiting well. We shouldn’t focus on what we are waiting for but look towards God to lead us in the season. Reflection questions: how are you responding to the waiting season God has you in? What is God telling you to do in the meantime? I pray that this was encouraging and empowering to you. Please remember that God comes to give you a life more abundantly (John 10:10).

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