We tend to spend our lives waiting for things. Sometimes we are waiting for material things, the new iPhone, the next Star Wars film, or a new season of Game of Thrones. Sometimes we wait for more abstract things: an acceptance to university, a text from our crush, or the return of a loved one from overseas. As Christians, we wait for the return of the Messiah and the coming of the new Jerusalem on Earth. In all, this waiting often leads, unfortunately, to impatience and restlessness.
For me, waiting to meet that “one” to spend the rest of my life with is swamped with impatience and a lack of faith. While I know that God has a plan, I’d much rather try and take things into my own hands rather than trust in him. In prayers, we might ask him to put that person into our life, or to help us with a raise we’ve been expecting at work. In my mind God hears these prayers and chuckles, slightly shaking his head and saying, “Just wait.”
We may think we want that new job, the new car, or to go on a date with that girl we see at the coffee shop. Often times, God has a plan contrary to our own, and that’s what makes him smile, in my mind, when we pray for these things. Romans 8 tells us “But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”(Romans 8: 25-28, NIV).
When we pray, God looks into our heart and sees what we truly need. Often times, he’ll open doors to things we didn’t think we needed, or would be right, often leading us in a direction different from how we thought things would happen. In a personal example, I never thought two years ago I’d be going into education and working closely with kids, I thought I’d work in the business world and make loads of money. God heard my prayers for finding a purpose and very bluntly made it so that I would be doing His will through my work. Ever since, I have been shown the joy in serving Him through working with kids.
In conclusion, do not be wary or impatient when waiting for our prayers to be answered. God knows what’s in our hearts and He knows what we truly need. If we have faith in Him, we can trust that all of our needs will be met and that we will be able to rejoice in doing His will, even if it means things don’t necessarily go according to how we thought they’d be.