I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” Lamentations 3:24
As the holiday season approached, package shipments were delayed due to an unprecedented influx of online orders. I can remember a time when my family preferred to simply go to the store and purchase items because we knew we had very little control over the speed of mail delivery. However, when my mother signed up for an account that included expedited shipping, this expectation changed. Now with a two-day guaranteed delivery, we’re accustomed to receiving things quickly, and we become frustrated by delays.
We live in a world accustomed to instant gratification, and waiting can be difficult. But in the spiritual realm, patience is still rewarded. When the book of Lamentations was written, the Israelites were mourning the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonian army, and they faced a series of challenges. However, in the midst of chaos, the writer boldly affirmed that because he was confident that God would meet his needs, he would wait on Him (Lamentations 3:24). God knows we’re inclined to become anxious when answers to our prayers are delayed. Scripture encourages us by reminding us to wait on God. We don’t have to be consumed or worried because “his compassions never fail” (v. 22). Instead, with God’s help we can “be still . . . and wait patiently for him” (Psalm 37:7). May we wait on God, trusting in His love and faithfulness even as we wrestle with longings and unanswered prayers.
How have you been waiting for God? How might you trust His timing?
Heavenly Father, sometimes it can be difficult to wait on You. Please give me the strength to continue hoping in You.
The book of Lamentations (unique in biblical literature) is a collection of funeral songs or dirges (laments). The first four of the five chapters are arranged acrostically using the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Chapter 3, which includes sixty-six verses, is arranged acrostically in sequences of three verses each beginning with the same alphabet letter. The book’s tone is heavy. God’s judgment had come on Jerusalem (1:1) and the nation (v. 3). Though the literary tour of the city is heart-wrenching, verses 22–25 of chapter 3 are heart-warming and hope-inspiring. Similar encouragement is expressed in verses 31–32: “For no one is cast off by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love.”