Ever look around church and feel like you must be the only one who’s not getting as much from God as you want?
The truth is we all long for more of God than we experience.
We want God to show up, to love us in the places that yearn for Him most, to make a difference we can feel and see.
Waiting for God can be like waiting for sex. (Bear with me.)
Consider a bride-to-be who can’t wait to come together sexually with the man she loves. She wants him and she wants to be wanted by him. (Sound anything like how you feel about God?)
waiting on God for a husband
What are her choices in how to deal with her desires?
- She can try to shut them down, to pretend like they’re not there. To do this successfully, she’ll have to pull away from her fiancé—relationally, emotionally, or in proximity.
- She could also take her desires elsewhere. Since her future husband isn’t available sexually, she could find someone else who is.
These are similar to the temptations we face when we feel God isn’t showing up for us. We can lower our hopes, assuming God doesn’t care much about how we feel, so we best get used to it. Or we can try to satisfy our desires with a temporal fix—using alcohol, food, sex, entertainment, work, even ministry.
But here’s an important question: What does the bride-to-be do to their wedding night by choosing 1 or 2? What does it cost their relationship as a whole?
Neither option is helpful for a bride and groom, and neither is helpful for us in our relationships with God.
Of course, there is another option:
What if instead of these, though the bride-to-be burns with unmet desire for him, she waits? What if, instead of running from her desire or running somewhere else with it, she embraces it?
How would that wedding night be different?
God knows you want more of Him. It’s nothing to be ashamed of in front of him. Your unmet hunger is not a sign he’s holding out on you, it’s a sign he made you for more of him. And like a good bridegroom, he loves that you want more of him, and he wants more of you, too.
Christ, our bridegroom, shows us his willingness to wait for us through the cross. There, he bore into his body all the ways we shut down from him and all the ways we left him for another lover. And it was there he cried, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me!”
Don’t shut down your longing for him. And don’t take it elsewhere. Instead, wait with him. Press your longing into his body on the cross.
The wedding of the Bride and Bridegroom is coming.
Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready (Revelation 19:7).
Question: What helps you “wait” when God doesn’t seem to be showing up for you where you need or long for him? Share a comment below.
it goes into music or work, i dont like being still im usually scared of what He has to say. or i just give up usually and try to stay busy.
Good point both in terms of purity and longing for fulfillment in God. So often we do not wait because the pain or even discomfort are too much. We have, I believe, to ask God to help us bear more discomfort. In our culture we are too much schooled to find quick fixes rather than schooled to have patience and wait for God’s BEST. Thanks for your thoughts, Josh.
Your insights are a welcome gift every time they show up in my email. What I’ve been practicing lately when waiting, is stopping and taking in the multitude of ways God is meeting me and holding me. The very air I’m breathing, my two hands with working fingers, a cup of coffee, a soft chair in a safe home, the fact that my body is healing things inside that I’m not even aware are there, all because of his provision. The gifts are countless when I stop and start naming them. After this exercise, I feel much less of a need to reach out for a fix.
What helps me “wait” to hear from God?
Reading His precious and powerful Word, and keeping my eyes wide open for His answers, then saying, “Thank you, Jesus.”
When I face having the option to wait or not, I’ve found it helpful to think about Jesus at the cross and also in the Garden of Gethsemane. I think about how he didn’t exactly want to go through what the Father had in front of him- the pain, shame, and suffering. Still he waited with God and told Him his thoughts and feelings. Picturing this helps me relate, and it’s helped me when I’ve waited.
God is showing me lately that the reason we are not ever satisfied here is because this place is not our home.!! When I feel empty, needing, depressed and negative thoughts I realize that it’s the time to press in and spend time with Him. That will make me satisfied. It’s like the verse, “Better is one day in your court than thousands elsewhere.”
We spend “thousands of days” or minutes each week pursuing other interests, relationships, hobbies and work. These are good and necessary, but, just one day in His courts is like uranium compared to the things that stimulate all the rest of our other time.