I recently followed a devotional on the Bible app Youversion, about waiting on the Lord, written by Charles Stanley, well-known pastor of a large church in Atlanta, Georgia. I don’t know if it was written specifically for this COVID-19 time, but I certainly found it very appropriate for this time of waiting for the virus to “go away”! Most of us have experienced some form of waiting, quarantine, isolation and even loneliness – all because of a virus that has stopped the world in its tracks. And it’s not all over yet, with recurrences, a “second wave” and a variety of different kinds of experiences. It seems it will take a while before things settle and we have some form of (new) normal again.
The theme of waiting runs throughout Scripture. It looks like the Bible sees it as a normal part of life. Whether it’s waiting for healing, waiting for peace, waiting for the Lord to answer a prayer, waiting for persecution to end – it is accepted as life-as-we-know-it.
It’s also important to note in Scripture that the “waiting” experience is described in light of our relationship with God. Instead of simply complaining or getting angry, believers in the Bible take their plea to God. A good example is found in Psalm 27, where David expresses his faith in God while acknowledging the difficulties he is going through. He mentions severe challenges, such as experiencing the wicked against him, being besieged by the enemy, having to fight a war and living through days of trouble. But in all of this he takes his refuge to God, saying: “The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?
While we are waiting and when are in the midst of the most severe trials, we can have hope, as long as we focus on God, our Rock and Salvation. Isaiah reminds us that “they that wait upon the Lord, shall renew their strength” (Is 40:31). May the Lord strengthen us and increase our patience as we trust Him during this time of waiting.