Waiting is one of the most difficult things we are asked to do in our lives. Often we know the promises of God, but we find ourselves wavering in our trust in those promises. This failure in our faith often comes when the pressure of our circumstance overrides our willingness to trust in the Lord and wait fully upon His promise. It is at these times that we begin to look for our own solutions. An example of this scenario is found in 1 Samuel 13:
1 Samuel 13:8-14 (NASB)
8 Now he waited seven days, according to the appointed time set by Samuel, but Samuel did not come to Gilgal; and the people were scattering from him.
9 So Saul said, “Bring to me the burnt offering and the peace offerings.” And he offered the burnt offering.
10 And it came about as soon as he finished offering the burnt offering, that behold, Samuel came; and Saul went out to meet him and to greet him.
11 But Samuel said, “What have you done?” And Saul said, “Because I saw that the people were scattering from me, and that you did not come within the appointed days, and that the Philistines were assembling at Michmash,
12 therefore I said, ‘Now the Philistines will come down against me at Gilgal, and I have not asked the favor of the LORD.’ So I forced myself and offered the burnt offering. “
13 And Samuel said to Saul, “You have acted foolishly; you have not kept the commandment of the LORD your God, which He commanded you, for now the LORD would have established your kingdom over Israel forever.
14 “But now your kingdom shall not endure. The LORD has sought out for Himself a man after His own heart, and the LORD has appointed him as ruler over His people, because you have not kept what the LORD commanded you.”
King Saul knew that he was supposed to wait for Samuel, but Samuel was not on time and Saul’s circumstances were quickly deteriorating. King Saul knew that he would be in trouble without the favor of the Lord, so he took matters into his own hands. The end result was not the securing of God’s favor, but instead King Saul lost God’s favor and his rule over the nation of Israel.
King Saul’s story echoes many of our own. We know the promises of God, but we allow our circumstances to become seeds of doubt in our own minds. With good intentions we try to take matters into our own hands, but in doing so we become disobedient to the Lord’s instruction. When we take matters into our own hands, we are essentially saying to God: “I don’t trust You.” In essence, we are trying to lend God a hand, as foolish as that may sound.
Today you may find yourself in what seem to be impossible circumstances. I encourage you to stay the course and remain faithful, even when the outcomes are uncertain. Ask God to help you in your lack of trust and to strengthen you where you are weak. God will resolve your circumstances in His timing and in His way. If you jump the gun, you will miss out on His best, and the end result may in fact be disastrous.