I was journaling tonight and felt this entry would be an edifying blog post for God’s people, particularly those struggling with pain and trials that seem to have no end in sight. My hope is that it sheds a little more light on the nature and character of God.
Tonight was a very rough evening for Myndi. Her pain levels were through the roof, and she was debating on going to the ER. The pain felt different than her normal pain and that scared her. It is hard to see her going through this, wishing and praying for the Lord to provide some relief. And he did. Pain meds began to work a bit and in his grace, she had some relief. During this brief reprieve (she had been taking meds all through the day but nothing was working) she made such a profound point to me. She said that “it’s amazing how God gives us just enough to get through a trial, but he doesn’t give us enough to last on our own.” The truth is, God purposely only gives us grace that is sufficient (Remember Paul’s request in 2 Corinthians 12:9?). He wants us coming back to him for everything.
Her perspective is life-changing for those going through trials and severe bouts of any kind of ailment, where one only experiences brief moments of relief and doesn’t understand why it is only temporary. Now, while God can and does heal completely, one reason he gives grace sufficient for the moment is because the heart can too quickly forget the grace-gift from above and tend to move forward on its own. That is why God gave Israel just enough manna for the day. If they had too much, they would easily forget the gift-giver. This moving forward on our own is contrary to what God wants us to do. In fact, it is sinful for us to move on in such a way.
Isaiah writes, “Therefore the Lord waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you. For the Lord is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him” (30:18, italics mine).
By not waiting on the Lord, we keep him from exalting himself in showing us his mercy. That is sinful—to do anything that keeps God from glorifying himself in love and grace towards his creatures.
And toward the end of his book, Isaiah writes, “From of old no one has heard or perceived by the ear, no eye has seen a God besides you, who acts for those who wait for him” (64:4).
God wants us to wait for him. His will is that we come to him like children, fully dependent on him for all things.
Paul, in his second letter to the Corinthians, using the passage from Isaiah 64:4, brings out another reality for those who wait. He writes, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him” (2:9). Waiting for him, means that we set our minds on the things that are above, not on the things on earth (Colossians 3:2). Having that enthrallment with Christ, looking to his glory, his plans, and his will in and for our lives, then we will rejoice in waiting for him.
We need to see our need for grace daily, which only comes from above. The “eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those who heart is blameless toward him” (2 Chronicles 16:9).
He who moves on from the graces and wonders of God to get through his trial on his own is not brave; he is sinful. It is a blameless heart—the one who seeks to do God’s will—that waits for him.
— Romans 11:36