In this article we will dig into the Bible and see what it means to wait on the Lord? The Hebrew word for waiting will open your eyes to a beautiful understanding of our relationship with God. So, grab your Bible and let’s dig in…
I’m pretty sure most Christians have said, “Oh, I’m just waiting on the Lord.” And I am 100% guilty of this on numerous occasions.
But what does it mean to wait on Lord? A lot of times Christians think that when they are waiting on the Lord, it’s this quiet unproductive posture of….well waiting. It’s all based around time.
At least that’s what I always thought it meant. I don’t know about you but when I think about waiting it’s like waiting at the doctor’s office or inline for groceries or even worse…the DMV.
And have you ever noticed that waiting for stuff like that can really drain you?
It’s weird… you are at the DMV for like 4 hours (no joke) and once you’re done you’re ready to take a nap or do a hardcore Netflix binge. Am I right? Never do you feel energized and ready to go afterwards.
But is that what God is calling us too? Is He calling us to idly wait?
Waiting on the Lord: What Does that Mean?
In Isaiah 40:30-31 says,
Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
And the young men shall utterly fall,
But those who wait on 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.
What God is saying is that waiting on Him does the absolute opposite. It actually renews your strength and it even takes it up a notch saying even if you do a lot of stuff (run and walk) it’s not going to affect you.
So, what does it really mean to wait on the Lord?
Those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength? Well, if you actually dig into that word “wait” in the Hebrew which is qavah (H6960) it means, “to bind together.”
קָוָה qâvâh, kaw-vaw’; a primitive root; to bind together (perhaps by twisting), i.e. collect; (figuratively) to expect:—gather (together), look, patiently, tarry, wait (for, on, upon).
We also see this word used in Psalm 27:14
Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord.
Just think about that for a second.
First off, “to bind together” is not sitting in a corner, waiting patiently or being quiet. It’s not even meaning to just wait for God to answer me in a few days or weeks. It’s about binding together with Him.
Those who “bind together” with Him shall renew their strength. So, what Isaiah is saying here is you’re getting your strength renewed by being very close to the Lord.
It’s like what Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me, you can do nothing.” John 15:5
I am the vine, you are, the branch is us binding ourselves to Him …
It’s about being intertwined with Him….
That’s where we gain strength. That’s where we see fruit. You don’t bare fruit by being spiritually idle.
That’s not what waiting on the Lord is. Waiting is productive in nature.
God wants you to draw close to him. Bringing our presence into His presence, and in that place, where the Spirit of the Lord and there is freedom. – 2 Corinthians 3:17
That’s also the place we can hear Him more clearly. If you are 50 feet away from a friend who is talking to you in their normal talking voice. You won’t be able to hear them well or not at all. But if you are only a foot away from them you can hear them very clearly.
That’s how it is in the spirit as well. The closer we get to the Lord the easier it will be to hear and discern His voice. (John 10:27-28 ) It’s the same concept!
Waiting on the Lord in The New Testament
We have dug around in the Old Testament on what it means to wait on the Lord. But what about in the New Testament? Is waiting on the Lord the same or is there another level of understanding?
Let’s look at Acts 1:4 where Jesus tells his disciples to wait for the promise.
On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about.
In a nutshell, it means to “to abide, to tarry, to continue to be present, to last, and endure.“
It’s one of the words used in John 15:5 for abide or remain (“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain (G3306) in me and I in you,)
μένωménō, men’-o; a primary verb; to stay (in a given place, state, relation or expectancy):—abide, continue, dwell, endure, be present, remain, stand, tarry (for), × thine own.
I love how one of the translations is “Be Present.” It reflects well with the Hebrew understanding of waiting. To bind with Him is to be present with Him.
So next time you’re wondering, or thinking I need to wait upon the Lord on an answer or something. Remember it’s not about waiting around for this huge revelation to hit you randomly.
It’s about being proactive in our relationship with H
“I’m going to get so close to Him. So that I can be strengthened and hear clearly what the Lord’s will is for me.”
Well, there you have it! I hope this post has encouraged you and it has encouraged me in my posture in waiting on the Lord. I’ll end with this quote
“Waiting is a very active part of living. Waiting on God, if we do it correctly, is anything but passive. Waiting works its way out in very deliberate actions, very intentionally searching the Scriptures and praying, intense moments of humility, and self-realization of our finiteness. With the waiting comes learning. I can’t think of much I’ve learned that’s positive from the times I’ve plowed ahead without waiting on God.”― Wayne Stiles
Drop me a comment below and share your thoughts! I would love to hear them.
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Melissa is a passionate minister, speaker and an ongoing learner of the Bible. She has been involved in church and vocational ministry for over 18 years. And is the founder of Think About Such Things. She has the heart to equip the saints by helping them get into the Word of God and fall more in love with Jesus. She also enjoys family, cooking, and reading.
She has spoken in churches in California, Oregon, Texas, and Mexico and has been featured in Guidepost Magazine and All Recipes Magazine. Read More…