I think that one of the most difficult words in the Bible is wait. And there are other words that are related to wait, like faith and patience. When I was growing up, one of the sayings that was bantered around was “Lord, give me patience while I stand on one foot.” For me, that wouldn’t be very long because I have absolutely no balance. But patience is a far weightier thing than we think. The English definition of patient is “bearing pains or trials calmly or without complaint” and “steadfast despite opposition, difficulty, or adversity.” So when the translators looked at the Greek words and used the word patience, these are the concepts they were thinking about.
Hebrews 6:10-12 NKJV
For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
Do you ever think that perhaps God has forgotten you? There are times in all of ours lives when it seems that the heavens go dark and God doesn’t speak to us. We continue on, but it seems as if it might be for naught because the trials that beset us continue and we can see no hope of respite on the horizon. The fact is, there is always hope because there is always a horizon, even if we can’t see it.
Have you ever flown in a plane, going east, taking off in the night time? I have done that a couple of times. It’s wonderful because as you fly east and continue to look at the horizon, you can finally see the dawn. It was there all the time, just over the hill, just over the mountain. Ira Stamphill wrote the hymn, “I’ve Got a Mansion.” The chorus is:
I’ve got a mansion just over the hilltop
In that bright land where we’ll never grow old
And some day yonder we will never more wander
But walk on streets that are purest gold
Just over the hilltop. I know that I forget that nothing lasts forever. Not this life and not the trials I’m facing. The fact is, I don’t know when the dawn will come, but it will come, and with it joy for the end of the trials. “For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5). There is a morning, but we need to have that full assurance of hope. In other words, we need to keep trusting the Lord. Nothing that we are experiencing is a surprise to Him. He knows about each situation we will encounter and He has already provided for us if we will trust Him and ask Him what it is we should do. Through prayer and obedience to His Word, we can imitate those holy saints who have gone before us and who, with patience and faith, waited upon the Lord to provide all that they needed. If He did that for them, He will do the same for us!