Helpful Ways to Wait on God When You Don’t Want To

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It's hard to wait on God. Especially when I start to think what if or never, but God's plans are perfect and sometimes waiting is the best thing I can do.

I’ve prayed and I’ve waited.

I’m guessing you have too.

  • A job.
  • A child.
  • A restored relationship.
  • A spouse.
  • A home.

The problem with big waits is we start to ask “what if.”

What if I never get pregnant?
What if I never get hired?
What if I never get married?
What if I never get out of debt?
What if..?

Rev and I have waited on God more often than I can count. Some times were easier than others. Some times we waited well, other times not so much.

Thankfully, God’s patience with me doesn’t depend on my ability to wait well. He always meets every need in His perfect timing. Always has and I trust He always will.

I have learned a few things about waiting. Some from ridiculously bad behavior . . . so, I’ll start with the things NOT to do while you’re waiting on God.

Don’ts for waiting when waiting is hard. 

  • Don’t Panic – I’ve let fear whisper never and tell me that God’s wait is a no. I’m learning to live this day with God’s help and embrace His powerful peace.
  • Don’t Pout – I don’t know about you but I’ve been known to throw a good pity party and it isn’t pretty! Pouting has never changed a thing; it just made me miserable.
  • Don’t Plot – After I’ve panicked and pouted . . . I plot and strategize. Also known as, manipulating things to get what I want.
  • Don’t Plead – And if none of that worked, I would plead with God and beg Him to fix my circumstances. I tell Him my plans and beg Him to get on board and make them happen. Not His will . . . but mine!

The truth is this approach is ugly. It makes me difficult to live with . . . I don’t even like living with me.

And even when all my panic, pouting, plotting, and pleading got me what I wanted . . . it rarely if ever turned out well. Living outside of God’s will and timing is never a plan for long-term peace and joy.

Let me say that again…

[Tweet “Living outside of God’s will and timing is never a plan for long-term peace and joy.”]

It's hard to wait on God. Especially when I start to think what if or never, but God's plans are perfect and sometimes waiting is the best thing I can do.

I believe there is a better way to wait on God. One based on this quote by Charles Spurgeon:

“Stand still” – keep the posture of an upright man, ready for action, expecting further orders, cheerfully and patiently awaiting the directing voice; and it will not be long ere God shall say to you, as distinctly as Moses said it to the people of Israel, “Go forward.” 

Helpful Ways to Wait on God When You Don’t Want To

1. Stand still and upright – Don’t doubt. Don’t listen to what ifs and nevers, but keep trusting . . . completely surrendered to the One who is working everything for good.

God says, “Be still and know that I am God. I will be praised in all the nations; I will be praised throughout the earth.” Psalm 46:10

2. Be ready for action – Do God’s will. Serve Him. Help others. There is always something to do and helping others will take your mind off your problems for a while. It will also glorify God as people see you surrendered during a difficult time.

“Be dressed, ready for service, and have your lamps shining.” Luke 12:35

It's hard to wait on God. Especially when I start to think what if or never, but God's plans are perfect and sometimes waiting is the best thing I can do.

3. Expect further orders – Be prepared. Live with hope. You and I are eternal people. This is not the end. It’s never the end. Trust God to guide you through this time of waiting. 

Happy are those who listen to me, watching at my door every day, waiting at my open doorway. Proverbs 8:34

4. Be cheerful and patient– Determined to stay focused on positive things. Do everything you can to limit the amount of time your anxious or upset. I use something I like to call “sadness appointments.” (I set aside 15 to 30 minutes a day to cry, cry out, and generally be miserable if I need it and then I choose to return to cheerfulness.)

But let everyone who trusts you be happy; let them sing glad songs forever. Protect those who love you and who are happy because of you. Psalm 5:11

5. Listen for God’s voice – Remember His promises. Let Him remind you of His love for you. Let Him encourage you with hope and give you His peace.

Tell me in the morning about Your love, because I trust You. Show me what I should do, because my prayers go up to You. Psalm 143:8

6. Go forward and PRAY – Praise. Repent. Ask. And Yield!

Praise God for who He is and all He does. Repent of your panic, pouting, and plotting. Ask Him to meet this need graciously as He has done so often in the past. And then Yield . . . remember He love you and wants all things to work for your good and His glory.  Pray and surrender.

Not my will, but Yours, Lord. Amen.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5–6

I’ll admit it’s not easy. But it’s best. God’s best. And I want God’s best, don’t you?

His best for us includes molding us into who He wants us to be and sometimes that takes waiting.

Biblically, waiting is not just something we have to do until we get what we want. Waiting is part of the process of becoming what God wants us to be.” ~John Ortberg

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Thank you so much for visiting CMB. I'm glad you're here. Please visit About Blessing Counting and Deb at the top of the page, and don't forget to leave a comment and subscribe before you go. God bless you!

16 thoughts on “Helpful Ways to Wait on God When You Don’t Want To

  1. Amen and oh me!
    I love and kind of hate this post, Deb! It’s just so convicting.
    I like your idea of sadness appointments. I’ve started doing this as well!
    Thanks for some great words on a day when I’m not feeling very patient in the waiting!
    Blessed by you~

  2. Love, love, love that last quote from John Ortberg! God has taught me so much about patience and waiting for His timing, and your series has served to reinforce those lessons wonderfully.
    In the long run, don’t we all want to be, fully, who God created us to be? May we all practice holy patience!

  3. Waiting on God is one of the hardest things we do… I think it’s especially hard these days when everything and everybody is in a hurry for something. the slower more relaxed time of days ago fostered a sense of patience more easily, but today… no so much. Scripture is full of examples of people who waited years… and even decades… for God to move them forward. (think Moses, Daniel, David, Esther, Ruth… even Jesus waited 30 years to start his ministry) So in light of realizing that God is never in a hurry, your suggestions about standing firm in our faith are very important in this day and time. Thank you!

  4. Deb, number 4 is the hardest for me. I get impatient waiting for people who were suppose to meet me 10 minutes ago. 🙂 I do want God’s best for me and learning to be patient and cheerful is part of it. Thanks for sharing with Thankful Thursdays.

  5. Stand still and upright…
    Poetic words of truth. It’s so easy to internally slump with defeat or weariness. I like the thought of stillness…and uprightness. 🙂

  6. I will listen to these tips. I had to do it earlier, but I remembered it when the problems came. Hopefully not too late …

  7. Just more proof that God always gives us what we need when we need it ! Also glad to hear that I am not the only one that reacts this way! Looking forward to more posts. Pray for me and I will for you !

  8. I liked this reading. Thanks for providing it.please play for me and my husband that our marriage is restored.

    Thank you

  9. Thank you this is very helpful right now. We lost my grandson in april of this year and my daughter is having such a hard time right now. I feel this can help. I’ve been praying for God to comfoŕt her but I realize I’ve been pleading ect. Thank you

  10. In this age of instant gratification, lack of patience has taken hold of me more times than I’d like to admit. I have to constantly reprimand myself and say to God and myself: ‘Not my will but Thine, Oh Lord!’ I find that having my little ‘temper-tantrums’, privately of course, boo-hoo-ing if need be, does help me realize that I’m not as infallible as I think I am. I need, need God and His loving guidance, on a daily basis and to place all things at the cross and just ‘wait’…”Be Still and know that I Am God”. Such a powerful sentence…God works in His timing, not mine. Such a comfort to know that He hears us and sustains us while we are waiting. Thank you for the article on waiting for God’s Answers.

    1. Thank you for stopping to add your thoughts, Kay. I completely relate to all you’ve said. “Temper-tantrums” and boo-hoo-ing too. But trusting Him in all things is the best and most secure place to be. God has gotten me through so many things I believed would be more than I could handle. For me, it’s remembering that even in the waiting He will give me strength. God’s blessings to you!

  11. Glad someone shared this with me. A marriage that has fallen to pieces, an absent husband lost in the world and living single in all senses while still living with us, has not been easy for me in my new-ish walk in Christ. I’m told to focus on God and my spiritual growth, which I didn’t understand how. This has helped immensely. Thank you.

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