“You stand in the line just to hit a new low / You’re faking a smile with the coffee you go…”
I curled my upper lip in exasperation as I see the long queues some ten meters from where I got off the jeepney. Not my day again. I turned my head from left to right searching the last row for my shuttle ride to BGC. As usual. It’s 6:45 AM. My job is supposed to start at 8:00 AM and there are at least five lines that I have to overcome to catch the trip to our office.
“Cause you had a bad day / You’re taking one down / You sing a sad song just to turn it around…”
I watched as co-rushers with familiar faces brisk walk towards the lines. Knowing that this would take more than a while, I diverted my almost-bad day into a more optimistic one.
I flipped the first few pages of a devotional book that I brought to keep me occupied during instances like these.
“Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion.
For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!” – Isaiah 30:18
“Blessed are all who wait for him.”
The words echoed in my mind. This verse might just be what I have to ponder on.
Waiting for a shuttle ride is like waiting for God’s answers to our heartfelt prayers.
He answers our prayers in four ways:
1) “No.” There are no vans to Ayala at the moment due to heavy traffic in C5. Sorry. You’ll have to take a cab.
Sometimes, the Lord says no when we pray. This is not because we are not His most favorite child, but because He loves us too much that He wants us to learn to be strong amidst the rejection or pain. There may also be times that we need to sincerely confess and repent for our sins.
James and John in Mark 10:34 wanted to be in high rank in the kingdom next to Jesus. But Jesus said no to that request, because it was up to God the Father to grant that petition.
(2) “Yes, but you’ll have to wait.” You are the nineteenth in line for the 18-seater van. Please wait for the next trip.
The Lord says yes to our petitions – but not immediately. He works this way so we can develop patience in waiting. In some cases, it may take months or even years until His perfect timing arrives. While we wait, God works behind the scenes on our behalf.
Perhaps the best example of patience in the Bible is the life of Job. To prove Job’s devotion to the Lord, God permitted the devil to destroy everything he owned (Job 1). Job was a rich man but he lost every bit of his property. Though the most devastating of all was when he lost his children. Yet Job did not blame God. He believed that God had a plan and that he would be patient for its unveiling. In the end, God returned to Job twice as much as what he had in the beginning (Job 42:10).
(3) “Yes, but not what you expected.” This van will route until Kalayaan only. Those heading to Ayala, please take the next trip.
There are times that the Lord grants our requests – only in a different packaging! He says yes, with some deviations from what we really desire. When we are praying, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” Sometimes God will say, “Yes, but not how you think.”
(4) “Yes, and here’s more!” This van will route until Market! Market!
Just because the Lord loves us dearly, He not only answers our prayers – He gives us more than what we expect. King Solomon, as a new and young King of Israel, asked God for something he knew he significantly needed – wisdom. God answered not only with a big yes, but gave him more than he could have dared to ask.
Just like waiting for a shuttle ride, we don’t know what time the next blessing will arrive. It might come soon, a little delayed or might not come at all. We don’t know how long we have to wait in line but we should always have the heart of a faithful servant and see how God’s plans unfold in our very eyes. God’s promises are always fulfilled in His perfect timing. Just keep the grace while waiting and trust where He leads! By the time the shuttle arrives, we praise God for at last we can rest our tired feet and weary hearts.
If you happen to be always waiting, remember that a loving God is in control!
Five Ways God Answers Prayer. Whatever the answer, your best interest is always in mind.