When it comes to discerning vision for your life based on God’s will, reflection on his word is essential as well as committing all you do to the Lord. Together, these elements assure you are guided by God’s word as well as grounded and established in the Lord.
Woven through all these aspects of understanding what steps the Lord wants you to take is the need for patience. Said another way, active waiting is essential for realizing God’s vision for our lives.
The Bible gives a lot of instruction regarding patience and waiting. Much of that is through examples of people like Noah and Abraham as well as through the prophecies like those from Isaiah, Micah, Habakkuk, and Hosea as they spoke to God’s people.
“For the vision is yet for the appointed [future] time. It hurries toward the goal [of fulfillment]; it will not fail. Even though it delays, wait [patiently] for it, because it will certainly come; it will not delay.” (Habakkuk 2:3, AMP)
We find additional instruction throughout the New Testament in verses encouraging us to wait actively – be patient while doing what we already know to do – for God’s will to come to fruition as we live out our faith.
“I thank my God always for you because of the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus, so that in everything you were [exceedingly] enriched in Him, in all speech [empowered by the spiritual gifts] and in all knowledge [with insight into the faith]. In this way our testimony about Christ was confirmed and established in you, so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift [which comes from the Holy Spirit], as you eagerly wait [with confident trust] for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ [when He returns]. And He will also confirm you to the end [keeping you strong and free of any accusation, so that you will be] blameless and beyond reproach in the day [of the return] of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful [He is reliable, trustworthy and ever true to His promise—He can be depended on], and through Him you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” (1 Corinthians 1:4-9, AMP)
While I like to believe I’m a patient person, I realize that often I am not. When others frustrate me or I’ve been sick or injured for a while or I want to reach a certain goal and feel like I’m just too late (i.e., old), I see that patience has eluded me once again.
When I’m being impatient, I usually eventually hear the Holy Spirit reminding me to trust in God’s faithfulness. This assurance comes when I first stop and refuse to let the overwhelm of life consume me. I try to do this regularly, and scripture encourages this habit.
“Be still and know (recognize, understand) that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations! I will be exalted in the earth.”” (Psalm 46:10, AMP)
When I am regularly still before the Lord, when I develop the habit of patient waiting in this way, I can live assured of his faithfulness.
Recognizing that God is God usually involves remember his activity in my life and that he’s never let me down. It means realizing that he’s always given me wisdom and understanding when I asked for it. It also includes recognizing my growth in patience when I let him work in my life.
Patience when it comes to living out God’s vision involves processing his activity in my life through reflection. This renews my commitment to his will because it assures me once again that God not only leads me in his will but he equips me to do it – to take action – as well.