on the Lord
by John Edmiston
Walking In the Spirit
(A Ministry of Eternity Christian Fellowship)
Walking in the Spirit, and being led by the Spirit, involves sensitivity to not only what God wants done, but also when He wants that thing done. Timing is important. The Spirit-filled life is exciting but it is not instantaneous. The Lord has His seasons:
Ecclesiastes 3:1-11 HCSB (1) There is an occasion for everything, and a time for every activity under heaven: (2) a time to give birth and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to uproot; (3) a time to kill and a time to heal; a time to tear down and a time to build; (4) a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance; (5) a time to throw stones and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace and a time to avoid embracing; (6) a time to search and a time to count as lost; a time to keep and a time to throw away; (7) a time to tear and a time to sew; a time to be silent and a time to speak; (8) a time to love and a time to hate; a time for war and a time for peace. ..(11) He has made everything appropriate in its time.
These 'times' are seasons of the Spirit, moments of grace. Just as someone might say to you 'this is not the right time to mention a pay raise'. It means the appropriate or inappropriate occasion and does not have anything much to do with clock time. The Scriptures have a number of views of time:
1. Immediately - the instant moment, especially mentioned in Mark's Gospel
2. Eternity time without end, time in God's Presence, everlasting to everlasting
3. Clock Time the third hour, the ninth hour, the third watch of the night
4. Calendar Time - months, seasons, years, the third year of King Hezekiah etc
5. Cyclical time time as repeating itself, as if the days of the year / history were on a looped string. Mainly mentioned in Job and Ecclesiastes
6. Event Time after X then Y, that is the first event must be completed before the second event will occur e.g the gospel of the Kingdom being preached to all nations....and then the end shall come
7. Seasonal Time a time for love and a time for hate, see above. The appropriate time or season in which to undertake an activity
8. Prophetic Time the future being seen in the present, eternity being glimpsed in terms of present or past realities (sometimes past tense is used for future events). Sometimes a number of events hundreds of years apart are referred to in the same prophecy.
As we wait upon the Lord we will be waiting in one of these modes of time. The Spirit may tell us to pause because the time is not yet. Or we may be told to move quickly while there is an open door for the gospel, a window of opportunity for ministry.
God has His timing for His blessings, whether they be spiritual blessings or blessings of a more down-to-earth kind. We can wear ourselves out trying to make things happen before their time or we can wait upon the Lord, trusting Him for the perfect timing for all things:
Psalms 27:13-14 HCSB I am certain that I will see the LORD's goodness in the land of the living. (14) Wait for the LORD; be courageous and let your heart be strong. Wait for the LORD.
Psalms 37:34 HCSB Wait for the LORD and keep His way, and He will exalt you to inherit the land. You will watch when the wicked are destroyed.
Isaiah 40:31 Webster But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk, and not faint.
As we wait upon the Lord the Holy Spirit puts 'air under our wings' and we are raised high like an eagle lifted by a thermal air current in the deserts of Israel. When we wait upon God we cease from useless striving so that our energy is well expended and is often renewed so that we can run and not be weary and walk and not faint.
Waiting on God requires a lot of faith and hope. It is tempting to give up and solve it ourselves especially when it is a deeply emotional issue such as a desire for justice:
Proverbs 20:22 Webster Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the LORD, and he shall save thee.
Psalms 37:7-9 Webster Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass. (8) Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil. (9) For evil doers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.
Those who wait upon the Lord will inherit the earth (Psalm 37:9) and even the meek will inherit the earth (Matthew 5:5). The meek are those who can wait quietly for God to show up on their behalf. They are not angry, fretful or impatient. They do not throw their weight around in an obnoxious and carnal manner. They prefer to pray through life's problems than crash through in a fury.
However, waiting on the Lord is not the same as sitting on your hands! It is patient but it is not passive. Waiting on the Lord involves actively listening to the inner man, to the voice of Christ within you, to the leading of the Holy Ghost, so that you know God's timing in every matter.
For this you will need to activate your 'spiritual senses' that is your spiritual eyes and ears so that you get to know the personal voice of God much more clearly. That will be the main topic in the second part of this series (today's study completes Workbook 1).
Hebrews 5:14 MKJV But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, even those who because of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
The senses that discern good and evil are not the normal faculties of touch, taste, smell, hearing and sight. A person can have their physical senses in perfect working order and still be spiritually and morally undiscerning! These are spiritual senses and they must be attuned to spiritual realities.
Matthew 16:1-4 MKJV The Pharisees and the Sadducees came to Him, tempting Him. And they asked Him that He would show them a sign from Heaven. (2) He answered and said to them, When it is evening, you say, Fair weather; for the sky is red. (3) And in the morning, Foul weather today; for the sky is red and gloomy. Hypocrites! You can discern the face of the sky, but you cannot see the signs of the times! (4) A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign. And there shall no sign be given to it, except the sign of the prophet Jonah. And He left them and went away.
The Pharisees and Sadducees had their physical senses intact and could work out the weather, but their spiritual senses were so dull that they could not recognize the times of their Messiah.
Matthew 13:14-15 MKJV And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah which said, "By hearing you shall hear and shall not understand; and seeing you shall see and shall not perceive; (15) for this people's heart has become gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and they have closed their eyes, lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them."
When the timing is
wrong a powerful engine can be shaken into many pieces. But when the timing is
right the same engine can produce hundreds of horsepower. We need the Spirit's
timing. We need to be n tune with Heaven. We need to wait upon the Lord.
This Article Waiting on the Lord is © Copyright AIBI-International 2009
This article may be freely reproduced for non-profit ministry purposes but may not be sold in any way and must be reproduced as is without alteration. Just e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org