Psalm 130:5-6 (NKJV) I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word I do hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than those who watch for the morning—yes, more than those who watch for the morning.
What are you waiting for? Praying for? Believing for? Are you searching for the Lord? Is your soul longing for a moment? Is there a promise lingering in your heart waiting to burst forth into glorious light? Is the darkness too long? The illness too hard? The mountain too steep? The valley too low? The conditions of life are hard to ignore. Persistent, plaguing and perplexing problems too difficult to overcome by weak and imperfect people. Yet, humans still dare to hope. The place of peace and true harmony with God are discovered by those who choose to live in alignment and agreement with the Living God. Those willing to wrestle with doubt and struggle with fear in order to continue to pursue purpose. The passage to such a place is filled with trouble, trials, temptation and turmoil. It is a journey worth taking but seldom endeavored because it requires waiting, trusting and hoping in the Lord beyond today as one watching for morning. Is that you? It is definitely me.
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His Word I do hope.
It is easy to get caught up in the daily grind of life and tiny details like little foxes eating at the rooted and grounded hearts of God’s People. Griping, complaining and grumbling along, it is a common practice to ignore the blessings and favor of God in each moment looking for something far too great for us to attain outside of Him and appointed for such a time as this. Our relationship with God will always require waiting as He makes all things beautiful in its time. Though there may be sudden transformation such as signs, miracles and wonders – that which is far greater is attained by faith and grace through tribulations, perseverance, and character that produce the kind of hope that never disappoints. (Romans 5:1-5) The race of faith is not in a single step but rather a footpath to the finish line comprised of many steps covered in blood, sweat and tears. Oh, it’s tough. Yet oh so worth it.
Genesis 32:30-32 (NKJV) So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: “For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” Just as he crossed over Penuel the sun rose on him, and he limped on his hip. Therefore to this day the children of Israel do not eat the muscle that shrank, which is on the hip socket, because He touched the socket of Jacob’s hip in the muscle that shrank.
Genesis 33:1-4 (NKJV) Now Jacob lifted his eyes and looked, and there, Esau was coming, and with him were four hundred men. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and the two maidservants. And he put the maidservants and their children in front, Leah and her children behind, and Rachel and Joseph last. Then he crossed over before them and bowed himself to the ground seven times, until he came near to his brother. But Esau ran to meet him, and embraced him, and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.
Victory is a great thing. It is exciting. However, depending on the journey that brought success in our life will determine the exuberance of our transition. Jacob wrestled with the Lord. He contended throughout the night. Jacob saw the face of God. What an amazing experience! He was changed in that moment. Transformed spiritually yet also physically and emotionally. Jacob was broken and remade at Peniel. As the sun rose on him, he limped on his hip. Oh friend, are you limping along today? I completely understand.
When our son was battling cancer, it came to a crossroad which required transitioning from conventional treatment to experimental trials. Our insurance company denied coverage. The hospital wouldn’t budge. The cancer was recurring about every three weeks. Without treatment, he would die. His odds in the clinical trial a grim 2%. There was no going back. All appeals exhausted. I had a moment in my office at work. Everyone was gone. All the lights in the building turned off. My desk lamp the only source to see by. I put my head in my hands and talked things over with the Lord. I literally had no other alternative. God had to move on our behalf. The next morning, I received a call that a fax had arrived from the insurance company authorizing treatment. The hospital took it to their legal department to see if it was enforceable if a mistake and once they agreed – well the rest is history. Within hours, my son was at the hospital preparing for treatment.
Throughout the fight for coverage, I always wondered what the “yes” would feel like. How would an “approval” feel after all the rejection? I believe like Jacob – sometimes you simply limp away. Transformed on the inside and yet humbled externally. Understand that signs, wonders and miracles are awesome! To celebrate victory in Jesus is essential. But know this friend, character transformation will cost you sometime. It is the death of self to fully embrace a new life. It changes how you walk, talk, live and breathe. It creates a radical shift in one’s identity to leave self-reliance for complete dependence with the Lord. To live in alignment means something must be changed. To live in agreement requires brokenness as you must give up your way. We must understand that God will stop at nothing to give us the Kingdom but He will only do for us what our character can withstand.
When Jacob met his brother, he “bowed himself to the ground seven times”. This was an act of submission. The new “Jacob” had a changed heart. His brother, Esau, who at once wanted to kill Jacob for his betrayal, now “ran to meet him, and embraced him, and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.” Sometimes victory is found in sweet surrender. There is joy in surrendering our life to Jesus Christ. If you asked Jacob if his journey was worth it, I believe in that moment it would have been an emphatic “yes”. I can only imagine the sight of his brother with 400 men struck fear in his heart. We do not always know what the Lord is doing but know that He is always doing something good in us, through us and for us.
Lamentations 3:22-23 (NKJV) Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
Morning comes in all different kinds of light. Today the sun is shining. Tomorrow it might be hidden by a cloud or overshadowed by heavy fog. The point is morning always comes. God is faithful. He is always consistently working His Plan. When life doesn’t turn out as expected, it is important to continue walking with the Lord. To contend, wrestle or even disagree with the Lord is inevitable because His Ways are not our ways. His Thoughts so much higher than our own. He is going to do exceedingly abundantly more than one might think, ask or imagine. He does all this despite the intolerance and impatience of His People. Do you need some new mercy this morning? It is right there for the taking. Go get it limping if you must! Too often the enemy tries to convince us that God has left us high and dry by the way things appear. He will not leave us or forsake us. However, there must be endurance. Endurance will always require an inward change to make the outward journey. A call to order of our natural senses for a spiritual cause. Morning is always coming. The sun is on the rise. Wait for it! Watch for it! It will be well worth it to those who do!
Psalm 63:1-2 (NKJV) O God, You are my God; early will I seek You; my soul thirsts for You; my flesh longs for You in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water. So I have looked for You in the sanctuary, to see Your power and Your glory.