Trust and patience go hand in hand. If we trust God in a matter, we need to be patient (wait on Him) for its fulfillment. Trusting Him with His word regarding a matter builds patience. Patience is a work of God. He builds it in us for His purpose. Through it He builds us into becoming a people of His choice so that we rightly handle His works and blessings. On the contrary, being impatient signifies lack of trust in Him; we do not believe He performs for our goodness in His time. Impatience leads us to make unwise choices that bring loss and even great harm. It is an indication that we do not fully abide by His desire. The following speaks of it. “Now when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people assembled about Aaron and said to him, ‘Come, make us a god who will go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him’” (Exod. 32:1).
We are familiar with the way Israel behaved with God. After having heard His mighty and fearful voice they resorted not to trust Him. This brought forth the obvious outcome. They sinned against God. They even led Aaron, the choice priest of God, to sin. Their hearts were full of obstinacy. They never wanted to trust God for all the things they would like to have. If God delays, does it signify His failure or rejection? Not at all; those who think of it in such manner neglected that He exists and rewards those who wait on Him. Had Israel waited upon Him, there would not have been the death of some 3000 people on that day. Instead of reward they received punishment. They could not conceive that God was planning for their well being through Moses, His servant. Why does God delay? By the way, He does not delay often. But when He does delay, it is because He has a plan. At times it may be to test us and refine us to remove any or every dross in us. By testing He gives the understanding of the lows and highs in life, and of the most important aspect He desires from us. Sometimes it is to bring many matters related to us to completion at one time that we are honored and His name is glorified.
We are certainly happy when God quickly fulfills a matter we request of Him. But, we must also discipline ourselves to be happy when He delays. Delay means He is working for our sake. This requires absolute trust in Him. To know that His intent toward us is to only do good is wisdom of higher level. For Christians to lack such wisdom and trust means they do not have His word. They do not know what waiting on Him means and the result it brings. They are built to take matters into their own hands. Thus, we see many in the church doing works, but in reality do not bring Him absolute glory. Even if they bring partial glory, it does not suffice, as it is influenced by the flesh. The world around them will not be in awe of their life. In other words, there is nothing unique in them causing surprise. They lack the righteousness that empowers them to set aside the carnal mind. Their thought process will lead them to make choices that make God angry. “But the angel of the LORD said to Elijah the Tishbite, ‘Arise, go up to meet the messengers of the king of Samaria and say to them, ‘Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are going to inquire of Baal-zebub, the god of Ekron?’’” (2 Kings 1:3).
Ahaziah never trusted in God, though he was the king of Israel and under the Law. He did not desire to know Him and His righteousness by the laws He gave Israel. In fact, he went in the ways of Jeroboam, who caused Israel to sin. Now, see the fruit he produced as a king. He ignored God. When He became ill, he did not inquire Him, but an idol. For what reason has he done this? It was because he did not set his mind to walk by God’s desire. In such cases the words trust and patience do not apply. We Christians must be aware of the life we live or intend to live for God. We can choose to be like the Israel that wanted to make a god for themselves, be like Ahaziah or say, “LORD, make me to know my end and what is the extent of my days; Let me know how transient I am” (Ps. 39:4).
Choice is all we have to make. It is God given, because He is just. The choice we make determines if we are His children. Now, if we are like David, we ask Him to show His purpose to us, i.e. to make us know our end. We ask Him how far or how much He wishes we serve Him, i.e. the extent of our days. Then, He will let us know from His word how transient our life will be. What does this have to do with trusting Him, waiting on Him or deny making our own choices? Once we have been saved by grace through faith we come into God’s will. We are the people that say to Him, ‘not my will, but Your will be done.’ And the first step toward it is to find out His purpose for us. In it there is everything pertaining to our life. It is the basis for the work we do for Him. It is His path to us for blessings, promises, helps and provisions. As we walk in it, He guides us in every step of the way. He helps us make wise choices and take directions that bear fruits to His name. It means He employs works for us to perform. Now, here is where trusting and waiting on Him plays the important role. For every work He wants us to perform we are called to depend on Him for fruition. If we are depending on Him, we wholly trust in Him. This means when He delays for whatever reason of His, we exercise patience. Employing anything other than patience will bring us loss and great harm. I do not mean we will lose our salvation, but we will suffer the works of the world upon us. Remember, just because He delays does not mean He failed or rejected us. Again, His delaying does not give us the license to seek our own ways. This would be foolishness.
Therefore, having His purpose is your first step to glorify Him. “If the first piece of dough is holy, the lump is also; and if the root is holy, the branches are too” (Rom. 11:16). Then, your works and life will be holy to Him. God prepared for each of us works to perform for His name. Yet, He first desires we have the purpose that relates them to us. If we do not know for what purpose we are called, how will we receive or realize them? His purpose for us is always holy and if we do not neglect it, we bear branches to inevitably surprise the world around us. So, wait on Him, if you trusted Him to produce remarkable results. He only has wonderful plans for you; even wonderful plans for others through you. You may not know them now and you do not have to, but if you continue to trust His purpose for you, in time He will lead you to see them. Though nothing seems to be happening, do not be perturbed. He is quietly working for you. At the right time you will rejoice. Had Israel obeyed God when He delayed in sending Moses, oh, they would have reaped great rewards. Know that when you surrendered to Him due to His grace, you give Him the right to do whatever He wishes with you. This is an advantage and worth living for. “Now if we put the bits into the horses’ mouths so that they will obey us, we direct their entire body as well” (Jam. 3:3).
A Christian who truly found God’s purpose will gladly obey Him. God directs him completely. He rejoices in it, since He is about to let the world know of His matchless power. Are you willing to be a vessel that obeys God no matter what? Permit Him to direct your heart, mind, soul and strength. You will not feel tired or irksome, but power flows into you rejuvenating you at all times. Even in suffering you will not suffer to the point of dissatisfaction. You will know that His matchless power will produce something that even if someone told you of it, you would not have believed. This is the prize of trust and patience. There is honor in them. “Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near” (Mark 13:28).
If you are displaying patience by trusting God, you are tender to produce whatever He expects of you. He has prepared you for the time that is near. Your joy is about to appear. God has turned you into a vessel to be used in any way He so wishes. You brought forth the qualities He requires of you. At this time He begins to elaborate the intent in His purpose for you. You will realize your closeness to Him and how far you have come to please Him. He will certainly let you sense that time has come for you to be blessed. He is able to make it happen for He is LORD and there is none like Him. It is “He who made the Pleiades and Orion And changes deep darkness into morning, Who also darkens day into night, Who calls for the waters of the sea And pours them out on the surface of the earth, The LORD is His name” (Amos 5:8).