Shortcuts. Have you ever wanted to take the shortcut before? The easy way out? If there was a way to bypass pain and trials and wilderness seasons, you would want to do it…wouldn’t you? I know I would. But sometimes there is no shortcut and the only way out is through.
Sometimes the hardest thing we could do in our lives is to simply wait on the Lord and put our hope and confidence in Jesus. Sometimes He requires nothing from us, but simple trust that He will move and act on our behalf…in His way and in His timing. He just asks us to wait.
Waiting is hard. We think and we analyze and we try to figure our way out of our circumstances. We think maybe I can DO this. Maybe I can DO that. What can I DO? Doing anything has to be easier than sitting here waiting around. But oftentimes, God doesn’t want us to DO. He wants us to BE still and know that He is God. He is in control and He is trustworthy.
The other day I wanted out of the waiting room. Thoughts flooded my mind. Pain swelled in my heart. I know I have been writing about overcoming and strength, but can I just be honest enough to admit that there are still days that are hard? This was one of those days. Temptation whispered in my ear. Temptation to do what? I think when we think about temptation we often think of the “more sinister” sins. This temptation was to take control of something that I had already surrendered to the Lord by “acting” and “doing” when I know full well that God asked me to trust Him and to wait.
So what did I do? I let the waves hit. I allowed myself to feel the pain. And instead of trying to do something to heal my own heart, I simply invited God in. His presence remained with me, while I waited out the night. I fell asleep in peace and I woke up feeling even stronger.
Upon waking up, my thoughts turned to Jesus. He was tempted in all the same ways I was. I remembered a particular passage of scripture when Jesus was tempted with a shortcut. In Matthew chapter 4, we are told about a time that Jesus was led into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. Jesus was tried by Him three different times. The last time the devil took Jesus to a high mountain and showed Him all the Kingdoms of the world. He told Jesus, “All this I will give you, if you will bow down and worship me.” Jesus’ reply came, “Away from me Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.’”
Imagine if Jesus had taken that shortcut? Imagine if he had taken that easy way out? Imagine if He tried to bypass the process to get to the outcome? Jesus knew that He would be given all dominion and authority. He knew that He would have the ultimate victory, but He knew it was not His hour yet. And He knew that His promise would come through a cross. He had to endure the pain. He had to endure the beatings. He had to endure the humiliation. There was no easy way out or shortcut He could take. What was at stake was so precious, so valuable. What was at stake was us! He endured so He could bring us through. He endured the pain so that He could help us with ours. And He showed us the glory in waiting on God’s way and His timing, even if it means that we must suffer awhile.
Stick it out through the process precious one. Abide even when it hurts. And know that there is more glory awaiting you than you could ever know or imagine.
But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. (Isa. 40:31)