Background reading: Ruth. Who wants to wait? Who wants to wait in a checkout lane? Who waits to wait for food when you’re hungry? Who wants to wait to hear back on an interview? Who wants to wait in a moment of uncertainty? Who wants to wait when your plan feels like it’s falling apart? Who wants to wait…Ever?
No one…and we see that truth spoken all around us through the popularity of two day shipping services, on demand TV service, online grocery shopping…AND the rising popularity of virtual assistants – can you imagine it? …Wait – You don’t even have to imagine anymore-it already exists!…Gone are the days of having to login to a computer or unlock a phone, or type in a search. All you have to do is speak a phrase, ask a question, and BOOM your answer is there!
Intriguing, and absolute affirmation that there are a whole lot of us in this world that are expecting things at the moment we want them. If you’re impatient like me, then YOU LOVE IT ALL, No one wants to wait. It’s great to have all of these things when we want them, except for the fact that it conditions us to a lifestyle that isn’t realistic, especially when it comes to our relationship with our Heavenly Father.
Now, I don’t demonize these tools or technology at all, I just make the point that the instant gratification they offer is misleading in other areas of life. It isn’t what we get when it comes to traffic, jobs, schools, or our requests of God, and that can be a little maddening when we just want something – NOW.
Lemme tell you about my wait…
I have to tell you that the year we just stepped out of…God has asked me to do a whole lot of waiting. And it has not been easy. I just want to know my answer is coming like I know my shipment is going to be here in two days, or I want to see those three dots moving at the bottom of my text box showing He is working on a reply. Is that too much to ask?
I have sought God time and time again for an answer, and it seems as though, His response is consistently telling me what I don’t want to hear – wait.
Scriptures that tell us to wait.
Ruth 3:18 “…Sit still, my daughter, until thou know how the matter will fall”
Isaiah 40:31 “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; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
Exodus 14:14 “The Lord will fight for you; you must be quiet”
Psalms 130:5 “I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.”
Micah 7:7 “Therefore I will look unto the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation: my God will hear me.”
Over, and over, again words telling me to WAIT….and I can’t stand it – yet, over the past year I have come to see that this wait possesses beauty and necessity, and He is teaching me something through its process.
Who wants to wait? No one, but the life of Ruth gives us our, “why”.
In this book, we learn that Naomi and Ruth were in a time of wait. They were looking for answers. Ruth’s husband had passed away, and according to their time Ruth was to be married to another son, but the problem was Naomi had no other son, he had died and so had her own husband. If anyone has ever been in need, it was the two of them. Their lively hood depended on their finding a kinsman redeemer, a person who would claim responsibility, defend, vindicate or act on behalf of them. Realizing truth, that one may not step in, Naomi provided an out for Ruth by telling her she was free to return home to her family. She was given an opportunity for a new life, and that new life didn’t include a wait – yet Ruth chose to be still, and follow Naomi telling her,
Ruth 1:16 “intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:”
She followed after her mother-in-law, and time after time in her story we find that she waits. Ruth waits as the fields are harvested to glean grain. She then waits at Boaz’s feet on the threshing room floor. After that she waits even longer for Boaz to honor his family member’s right to Elimelech’s (Naomi’s deceased husband) land – and Ruth…and after all of this waiting, sees it pay off when Boaz, a wealthy landowner, takes her as his wife, and in that moment she is offered new life, and new hope. Gone are the days of waiting for dropped grain, waiting at the threshing room floor, and waiting to see if her kinsman redeemer would come through.
Kinsman Redeemer – how does this apply? Should I wait?
As a people, we can all identify with this lesson because we too are in need of a kinsman redeemer. Whether we acknowledge it or not, we are in need of the one, and searching for the one who will step in, claim responsibility, redeem, vindicate or act on behalf of us, and His name is JESUS.
He is the one who stepped in and claimed responsibility for us when in innocence He died for our sins. Jesus is the one who paid the ultimate price for our redemption. He is the one that vindicates us, clearing us of blame from ALL sin. Our Savior is the one who acts on our behalf. He is the one who makes a way when we cannot see a path.
Jesus is the One we trust in, wait on, can be confident in to reward our obedience just as we saw the Lord do for Ruth.
But we still have this problem of our flesh that screams, ‘I don’t want to wait! Power on and get through it already!’ So we battle ourselves as we learn to trust that there is purpose in our wait, and submit ourselves to the supremacy of His plan. We must make it up in our minds to stop taking these things into our own hands, and accept that there is no fast forward, no hurrying through -only trust, prayer, and patience. We must – Choose Him.
Think it over:
1) Are you waiting on an answer from God?
2) Are you waiting for Him to work something out for you?
If your answer to these questions are, ‘yes,’ think over the story of Ruth and the powerful scriptures shared here. Pray that God will help you see His hand working as you wait. Ask Him to open up your understanding and allow you to learn what it is He is trying to teach you in this very moment. Thank Him. Thank Him in advance for the beauty of the plan that He is working before you see His results. Then after you’ve thanked Him, seal your prayer in the powerful name of Jesus…and wait. You won’t regret it!