Waiting for God in a World of Instant Gratification
Not to sound like a spoiled brat, but most times I get what I want when I want it. I mean if I need to know something it’s right at my fingertips with the internet. If I need something, I just go out and buy it, provided it’s not that expensive. Even then, though, I can start saving and it won’t be that long. I mean think about life today, compared to life a hundred years ago; travel is quicker, getting food is quicker, acquiring information is quicker, and even communication is quicker. We live in a world where we have immediate gratification of our wants and needs. There are those BIG goals though that seem to take forever to accomplish. However, even in those we are taught to make small goals leading to the larger ones so that we can see progress, see that something is happening. Oh, and waiting for packages, a thing of the past because we can now track our orders and know exactly where our packages are. So when do we ever have to truly blindly wait for something?
Now translate this culture into into your spiritual life. For me the two cultures clash. I think about the Bible and all of the stories and I wonder why isn’t God so evident today, why isn’t he answering my prayers with an audible voice, why doesn’t he talk to me right away? Do you ever think that it would be easier to live in Bible times where God spoke from heaven, or showed you a burning bush, or when Jesus walked this earth? I do. Then I think again. It’s so easy to think that they had it easier back then, and when just reading the stories it seems like everything worked out just the was it was supposed to. We can see the end from the beginning.
But, how do you think they felt living their own stories? I mean God wasn’t exactly instant with them either. The Israelites wandered around for forty years before entering the land of Canaan. Elijah had to pray seven times before the altar was burned with fire from heaven. Job lost everything and went through one of the most trying times a person can go though, not knowing what would happen in the end. David was ordained as king and then had to endure the hatred of Saul and until Saul died before he actually assumed the throne. Namaan had to bathe in the river seven times before being made whole. The woman with the issue of blood, had been suffering of the disease for years; and the blind man that Jesus healed, blind from his birth. The friends and family of Lazarus had to wait three days for Jesus to arrive and they still didn’t know that he was going to raise him from the dead. Do you think these people saw an immediate God? Or do you think they had the same mental turmoil that we do when we’re waiting for answers to our prayers?
After thinking about these things I finally realized that God wasn’t more there then. They had to wait just like I’m having to wait. It just seems like it was easier for them because I can read their whole story and know that it works out for their best interest. In knowing that though, I can believe and know that just like I know their story, God knows my story. He knows the end from the beginning; how my story ends. I have to trust that, be patient, and not get caught up in wanting it my way right now! So as I struggle wanting to know what comes next, and suffer this mental anguish of not knowing what my future holds and if God is hearing my prayers I have to remember what I read in Psalms. How precious also are thy thoughts unto me God! How great is the sum of them! (verse 17) Easier said then done, but it’s time for a little faith!