I'm reading Broken Bread (free download) from one of my favorite Bible teachers John Write Follette. In Ch.6 he discusses Is. 40:31 "But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint." (Isaiah 40:31, ESV).
Follette writes that all too often we find these blessings missing in our lives. We run and grow weary, we walk and do faint. There is only one condition to receive these blessings - to wait on the Lord. Everything hinges upon us knowing what it means to wait on God.
Follette warns us that waiting is not prayer, but waiting follows prayer. "They are inseparable". He gives four definitions of the word waiting found in the Scriptures to help us understand this spiritual discipline. The first meaning is Silence. This is a waiting quietly for God to respond to our prayers. We live in a busy and active culture and we have not conditioned our hearts and minds to wait and listen. Follette says "Our souls are too noisy. In prayer life alone see how it hinders. Our hearts are much distressed and burdened, so we go to prayer and maybe spend much time pouring out our petitions before the throne. And too many times we get up immediately, and rush out of His presence and often try to answer the prayer by some efforts of our own."
The second meaning of waiting is the expectation of hope. More on that tomorrow.