Wait on God
My dear youth:
What is the main characteristic of a man or a woman who believes and loves
God and performs great deeds in their life? It is the genuine, deep, and immovable
trust that they have placed in their Creator because this leads them to wait on Him.
Solomon precisely urges us to develop this attitude when he tells us: “Trust in the
Lord with all your heart.” Proverbs 3:5. The immediate question that comes to mind
is: Is my trust in God firm and unshakable? What degree of trust in God do each of us
have? Do we always hope in God?
Recognize divine blessings
Ancient men of faith recognized God’s blessings, as well as His love and
benevolence, by offering gifts and sacrifices. For them it was of utmost importance to
develop their trust in God and to be in close communion with their Maker. This is how
they showed, with their way of living, that their entire existence was impregnated with
that aroma of eternity. This allowed them to perform great feats.
David fought the giant Goliath and brought him down despite the fact that this
Philistine soldier was in many ways superior to the young shepherd boy. David hoped
in God, Goliath did not. The first Christians offered their lives in Roman circuses for
not wanting to deposit a few ashes at the feet of those statues that represented idols.
They died with honor and dignity hoping that one day God will resurrect them. Daniel
and his companions decided to cast their lot with the God of Israel rather than disobey
His commandments, despite the terrible death sentence weighing on their heads.
From personal experience they knew what it was to wait on God and thus they were
able to save their lives from the fiery furnace and in the lion’s den.
When a man or a woman placed all their trust in the Lord, they saw the sea
open or high and strong walls fall as the Israelites saw it. Others, like the widow of
Sarepta, watched as flour and oil multiplied in her empty jars; others how the dead
were raised by the authoritative word of Jesus. Naaman was cured of his leprosy
because he trusted the prophet’s promise, the wedding guests in Canaan tasted an
extraordinary wine that Jesus multiplied because they did what He told them. King
Hezekiah lived fifteen more years despite the fact that he suffered from an incurable
disease, because he cried out to the owner of life. For the same reason, the paralytic
walked, the blind man regained his sight, and the woman with the issue of flow was
healed. Stephen saw the heavens opened and beheld the glory of God. The
unshakable faith of those men allowed them to conquer kingdoms and defeat their
enemies without fighting, as was the case with King Hezekiah’s troops who defeated
the Assyrians by the miraculous intervention of an angel.
Believing and hoping in the One who created us restores hope to sinners, like
the woman at Jacob’s well or Mary Magdalene who was freed from the devils that
dominated her. Mordecai and Esther rejoiced when God worked on behalf of the
Jewish people, and they were able to save their lives despite a terrible edict of
extermination. Their lives were permeated with the pleasant aroma of divine
confidence. Is this so in our case?
Waiting on God is a human exercise, but encouraged by the inspiration of the
Holy Spirit. Whoever does not learn to wait on God will have to suffer great
disappointments and dissolutions, bitterness, and pain. It is not that those of us who
hope in the Lord with all our hearts are not going to be beaten down. Yes, like Job, we
will have afflictions, like Jesus, we will be able to suffer reproach, contempt, mental
anguish and even death, but these shocks that tend to tear the heart will not succeed
in taking away our hope in God. Our bitterness will be softened and we will receive the
necessary power, as we have been promised to face what comes and adopt the
correct spiritual position (1 Corinthians 10:13).
At the time of writing this pastoral letter, I received the news that a very beloved
pastor and brother from Africa, with whom I had the privilege of meeting many times,
has died from Covid-19. It seems that the brother entered the hospital under his own
power, and nothing could have foreshadowed the outcome, but that’s life. We are
praying for other dear brethren who are struggling between life and death. I just
telephoned an acquaintance who lost his father, and not long ago I telephoned a
pastor brother who lost his sister and his brother to the aforementioned virus. They
were not old, however, it was their moment. Who can guarantee a second of life? No
one, only the Author of life, can lengthen or shorten our existence. It is up to Him to
decide. That is why we must exercise waiting on God, saying: “when He wants and
how He wants.” I know it is not easy to practice this when you are in a hospital bed
watching your life wither away.
Nobody wants to die, at least this is not normal. We all want to perpetuate
ourselves in this life, to be happy. Nobody wants to suffer, face difficulties, and
problems. We were not created to fight and spend our lives in constant battle. We do
not have natural resources for this. We are weak and unable to change our character
on our own. We need God, the grace of Christ in our hearts, to be able to say as Job
said: “For I know that my Redeemer lives.” Job 19:25. What valuable spiritual
resource did this patriarch possess? His firm trust in God, he knew how to wait on God
and on God.
The apostle Paul had the same line of action as Job, which is why he was able
to express the following sentence: “… for I know whom I have believed and am
persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.”
2 Timothy 1:12. What hopeful words! Paul had decided to trust God and was fully
certain that his decision would keep him happy, preserve him from the destructive and
exhausting work of the devil until the Lord decided to take him away. Isn’t this the
attitude that all of us who love God should adopt?
Dear youth, I invite you to wait on God. It means that you must place your lives
completely in His hands and let Him direct them. Let yourself be carried away by God;
He knows what is best for you, He knows your heart perfectly and He knows how to
act to make you happy and complete in Him. Will you let Him? God bless you. This is
my wish and prayer. Amen.
José Vicente Giner
Pastor and Leader of the Youth Department
of the General Conference
1. What does it mean to wait on God?
2. Why do people wait on God when things go wrong and not vice versa?
3. What led the great men and women of the Bible to wait on God?
4. How can we learn to wait on God