Everyone experiences frustration at some time or another. Something doesn’t work out the way we want or we’re waiting for something and it’s taking a long time to arrive. This is especially true when there’s nothing we can do about it, or any efforts to change the situation have failed. This leads to more frustration.
I listen to Joyce Meyer all the time and this blog is based on her teaching on the subject. She came up with a great list which perfectly defines what frustration is:
Trying to do something about something we can’t do anything about
Trying to make something happen that only God can make happen
Trying to get something we don’t have but we have no ability to get it
Trying to get rid of something we DO have but no matter what it doesn’t go away
Sometimes frustrations are short term and quickly resolved or really not a big deal in the grand scheme of things:
- Waiting for a train that is delayed
- Queuing at the Supermarket check out when every other queue is going faster than yours and someone at the front of the queue is paying in cash and is trying to get the exact change out of their purse!
- You’re driving somewhere and you’re in a hurry but you’re stuck behind someone who is going about 15 mph
But sometimes waiting for a situation to change can take a long time to happen and can really take it out of you. When it’s me, I first of all need to ask God whether I am not the cause of the delay. Is God waiting for me to move? Has he told me to do something and I haven’t acted on it? If I ask God if it’s me, He WILL answer!
Sometimes, however, we are not the cause and God just isn’t ready to change our situation yet. Many Bible characters had to endure long times of waiting in unpleasant circumstances before God changed things: Joseph in prison; David running from Saul; Moses living in Midian for forty years.
God was doing a work in them whilst they were waiting. He was preparing them and changing them. The best thing I can do when in these times of trial and waiting is to co-operate with whatever He wants to do in me.
Joyce’s list of things to do at these times gives us some good pointers of how to work with God during the waiting game.
- Pray and open the door for Him to work
- Cast your care on Him and He will take care of you (Ps 55:22)
- Be Patient
- Keep a good confession
- Call those things that are not as though they already were (Rom 4:17)
- Believe what you have asked for in faith. We believe FIRST and then we see it (John 20:29)
- Look beyond what you can see with your natural eye.
God is never late