I wait for the LORD,
my soul waits, and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
more than those who watch for the morning,
more than those who watch for the morning.
How good are you at waiting? Do you feel like your life is passing you by while you stand in line at Walmart? Does your blood pressure go up every minute you sit in the waiting room at the doctor’s office? Do you often wonder if a traffic light is malfunctioning because it takes it so long to change from red to green? If your answer to any of these is “yes,” then I feel your pain. I hate to wait. Yet, how we wait in these momentary situations affects our peace of mind and our relationships with those around us. Even more importantly, how we wait during difficult seasons of life reveals something about our faith and confidence in God’s care for you.
The text above from Psalm 130 reveals a heart that feels the tension between the patience that waiting requires and the anxiousness that it causes. In the first three lines, the writer boldly asserts his faith. “I wait for the LORD” makes the point that he is not simply waiting on his luck to change. He is waiting for the LORD to act. The second line adds, “in his word I hope.” God has made promises of blessing and care, and he is banking on what God has said. Then, for the third time, he asserts again that he “waits for the Lord.”
The last two lines, however, reveal that even the person of faith may still feel discomfort even during the waiting. Stating it twice for emphasis, the author seems to be saying that the intense feelings that his waiting brings are “more than those who watch for the morning.” If you have ever had night duty in an unpleasant job, then you know what it is like to long for the first light of morning. Knowing that the dawn will come that brings relief, we have hope, but we still feel that it cannot come soon enough.
This psalm is honest about the feelings that come when we have to wait, but in order to confront the anxious feelings, there is an assertion of faith.
When we have done all that we can think of to do to help a situation, when we have prayed repeatedly, asked others for advice, and made our exhausted our resources, only to find that the situation is still not resolved, what do we do then? We wait on the Lord. We wait, asserting our faith, hoping in his word, and watching for the morning.