Today I want to slow us down just a Little bit, so that we can think about waiting! Isaiah 40:31 says: “But those that wait upon the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not faint!” We love the last part of the verse that talks about being renewed, soaring, running and walking! But we usually skip right over the first part – the part that gives us the pre-condition for renewal, soaring, running and walking! It says “those that wait on the Lord”!
Waiting Is Hard To Do! And while waiting is hard, we do have a choice! Not everyone will make the choice to wait, in fact – most do not wait and even when we do decide to wait is is usually not long enough! Why is it so hard for us to wait? Could it be because we want results right now? We live in a microwave/drive through society – which wants what it wants and wants it now! I think another thing that gets in the way of our waiting is: We think that we have to make something happen! The truth is: There are some things that no matter how bad you want them to happen, you cannot make them happen! I think another problem is we worry about what other people will say or think! The opinion that we need to be concerned with is God’s opinion – not what someone else thinks or says is God’s opinion!
The bottom line is this: WAITING IS GOD’S PREREQUISITE FOR BLESSING! The verse says: “Those who WAIT on the LORD will…” Waiting has it’s reward! I am not talking about waiting for waiting sake, but waiting to hear, see and be moved by God!
Take a step back from the situation! Put your hands behind your back and focus on what God might be up to! You might just be amazed at how God can take whatever and use it for amazing things in and through your life!
If we are going to succeed by living our lives in and according to the plan that God has for us, then we must have as a part of our lives – certain attitudes and practices! I want to suggest five for us to consider today:
1. FOCUS – We cannot accomplish anything of substance without focus! Focus is the ability to push aside distractions, so that we can give our attention to the things that really matter. One of the biggest obstacles that I face every day of my life is a shift in focus! There is just so much to focus on, and it is impossible to focus on everything! This is why we must learn to filter! A good filtering question is this: “What Really Matters?” (By the way we are looking at this question each Snday this month at Northwood and Partnership!) Ask and answer this question to get at the heart of what is really important in your life!
2. STRONG RELATIONSHIPS – We can’t live with them and we can’t live without them! Relationships are great when they are going the way that we want them to and bad when they are not! Good or bad – relationships are a necessary and vital part of our ability to succeed! We cannot succeed by ourselves and if we could – what good would the success be – if we had no one to share it with? Give time and priority to developing and growing your relationships starting at home and working outward!
3. HARD WORK – If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right! If it’s worth doing, then we should do it with all that we’ve got! The only success that laziness will lead you into, is success at and in nothing! Whatever God has gifted you to do – do it with all of your heart, for His glory and others blessing! Give yourself to that high and holy calling everyday. If God has gifted you with the ability to sell – work hard at selling! If God has gifted you with the ability to heal – work hard at healing! If God has given you the ability to build – work hard at building! Whatever your God-given ability – work hard to accomplish great things for and with God!
4. PERSEVERANCE – There will come a time when you will hit a road block. It does not matter how focused you are, how strong you have grown your relationships or how hard you are working! When you hit the road block, you will have to make a decision: Do I stay where I am or do I go up, over, around or through? Perseverance will always find a way up, over, around or through!
5. BLESSING – That little something extra that will put you over the top every time is something that can only come from God! When you are faithful to focus, build relationships, work hard and persevere, God will be faithful to bless!
Your being a success at what and who God has called you to be will not happen by accident! I see so many people today that are doing good things and hoping that just by staying in the “circle of good” that success will find them! You have to do not only good things, but the right good things, if you want to experience the success that God has in store for you! You have a life that is full of potential! You have a God that longs for you to experience fulfillment! But your potential means nothing, if you fail to use it for His glory. And fulfillment cannot come, unless you are willing to work for it!
Yesterday we talked about creating time with and for God! This is vital if you are going to the next level. This time with God allows you to hear from Him and know His will for your life! YOU CANNOT BE AND DO WHAT GOD HAS CALLED YOU TO WITHOUT VITAL TIME WITH HIM! I am not talking about being a “holier than thou!” I am talking about realizing that their is a Creator and He has a plan for His creation. Get to know the Creator and get to know the plan! The first step to your experiencing the success and fulfillment that God has for you – is taking and making the time for Him!
With Him you can strengthen your family, grow your relationships, improve your career, develop you faith and find physical energy that you never dreamed existed! It is true that you will reap what you sow! How can you expect a harvest if you don’t take time to plant some seeds? Your effort today may not bring you anything today, but it will eventually bring you something and that something will be reward if you are walking according to God’s plan! Don’t live your life by accident – live your life on purpose and for a purpose!