My 5-year-old son, Gabe does not wait well. When he wants something, he wants it right now and has a hard time being patient. He used to say, all the time, “It’s too hard to wait!” I told him I wanted to get him a shirt with a picture of Iniga Montoya from The Princess Bride that had a caption on it, “I hate waiting” If you have not seen that movie, you need to watch it! It is fantastic.
But isn’t that how we are as a society? Most adults don’t throw fits if we have to wait, but most of the time, we don’t enjoy waiting. We want what we want NOW. We are a culture of instant gratification.
It’s hard for me to wait too. I’ve never been good at it.
I see something I want, whether it’s a physical object, or something I want to happen, and many times I start obsessing over it, trying to figure out how I can make it happen, and forgetting that I am not in control.
There is someone else who was not good at waiting. His name was Saul. In 1 Samuel 13, Saul and his men were hiding from the Philistine army, waiting on Samuel to arrive so he could offer a sacrifice to the Lord before going into battle. Saul waited 7 days, which was the time set by Samuel, but when he didn’t arrive and Saul’s men began to scatter, Saul went ahead and offered up the burnt offering. Just as he finished, Samuel arrived. Samuel rebuked him and told him since he did not keep the Lord’s command, He was going to take his kingdom away and give it to a man after His own heart.
God gave Saul a chance at greatness. He would have established him as a great king over Israel. If only he had waited. And how ironic that as soon as he finished the offering, Samuel arrived. How many times are we waiting on something, decide we can’t wait any longer and take things into our own hands and then God comes through? There is an old saying that God is seldom in a hurry but He’s never late. (Let that sink in!)
Saul was probably feeling very stressed seeing his army disintegrate for 7 days. So why was it a big deal that he offered the sacrifice just a tad bit early? His response reflected his fear of what people thought of him, a lack of trust in God, and his haughty attitude toward obedience. All of that boils down to self-centeredness. Making it about you and not about God.
If we forget about ourselves, remember that God is sovereign, that He has a plan and everything will happen in His perfect timing, then we are taken out of the picture.
We need to put God on the throne of our lives and trust that He will take care of us. Because He will. When we try to control things, we just mess it up. Does he use us for his purpose? Of course! He was going to use Saul as a great king, but he showed that he did not trust the Lord first, so God replaced him with David, who definitely was not perfect, but his heart was in the right place.
God wants our hearts. He wants us to not think about ourselves as much as we think about Him and how we can serve Him.
So try to remember that this week. I’m going to try too! Give everything to God through prayer and ask him to take control of whatever it is you desire for your life. His timing is always better than ours, and you will be blessed if you trust Him to take care of it.