Image by Thomas Allsop
Image by Thomas Allsop

The Grand Painter's Technique

Author Note: Here is an excerpt from the devotional I am writing on waiting! This is just the first draft, so it may change by the time it's published. You guys have been so great and supportive, following along my writing journey, The Book Writing Diaries (Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok); so I wanted to give you guys a sneak peak of the product of what I've been working on!

Waiting is extremely frustrating. There are times we want to give up, and not because we want what we are waiting for any less but because it’s hard bearing the uncertainty that comes with waiting. If you didn’t have patience before starting your waiting season, you will after. You can trust me on that because I’ve never been very good at the whole patience thing until my own waiting season.

If you are a dreamer, you tend to picture things happening a certain way in a certain time. When we don’t see those things present, we automatically are filled with doubt. We just assume because nothing appears to be happening or progressing, it is not God’s will and is not going to happen at all. God is always working, especially in the silence. He is progressing things in ways we cannot see. It is often down the road that we look back and see that God has been working all along. God does His best work in the silence because we are in full dependence on Him when we can’t see what’s going on.

We often go through cycles of dry seasons in waiting, but then, all of the sudden, something huge happens. God will surprise us when we are least expecting it. The timing is necessary to get there, and His timing is never by mistake. God doesn’t withhold anything from us, including timing. Nevertheless, every single time things aren’t progressing at the speed we would like them to, we fall back into the pattern of doubting whether this whole waiting thing is God’s will. Nevertheless, each time, He is gracious and gentle to remind us that it’s His timing and not ours.

When you focus on not being in the place that you want to be in your waiting, you’re going to get burnt out. You’re going to either try to take over control or you’re going to overwhelm yourself with doubt when nothing happened to cause you to have any doubt in the first place. When God promises us something, it is ours. We have the assurance that what is for us, will not pass us. If we have this assurance that if it’s really meant to will be, it will be, then can’t we leave the timing and progression of it all to God? God is super intentional, and to get to that place you want to be, His timing needs to look a certain way.

Sarah is the perfect example of having frustration in not seeing any progress. Sarah was Abraham’s wife, and at the age of 65 years old, she was still childless. God gave the promise to Abraham that he would have many descendants, which probably produced many mixed emotions in barren Sarah who so desperately desired a child. In 2 Corinthians 12:7-10, Paul talks about having a thorn in his side, and being childless was that core of Sarah’s agony. We feel the same exact way about what we wait for. Daily Grace Co. points out that Sarah likely felt that God’s promise for Abraham’s many descendants depended on her and her fertility.[i] Can you imagine the pressure and turmoil she felt? She must have thought about it all the time, weighing on her for years. Additionally, the promise was given and confirmed to Abraham, but she was not directly included in that promise until over a decade later. God was silent to her during that time, but still intentional and working.

It’s easy to fall into this same mindset as we wait and think that we’re not seeing any results yet because of something we are doing or not doing. We can be afraid of messing everything up. Being so close, we want to do something, anything, to close that gap and bring the promise to fruition. Sarah’s hope was fading, so she took matters into her own hands, and gave her maid, Hagar, as a wife to her husband to bear him a son. Sarah came to regret her actions for the rest of the days, which is the consequence of stepping outside God’s design for marriage. Even with her mistake, Sarah did not ruin the promise God had for her. In Genesis 17:19, God confirmed that “Sarah’s son, not Hagar’s, would be the child whom the covenant promises would find their fulfillment (Gal. 4:22-28).”[ii] God’s promises in our life have nothing to do with us and do not depend on us. John MacArthur notes the promise God made to Abraham was a unilateral covenant, completely one-sided in obligation.[iii]

We need to leave things alone and let God work. It’s as if God is the artist and painting a picture for you. Painting a masterpiece takes a while to complete. When we see the work in progress, to the bystander, it may look like there’s no difference or anything really progressing. However, God, the artist, is so precise to take steps in a certain way. He sees the whole vision and knows what needs to be done and when in order to create that masterpiece. We may not understand or see the whole process, but it will all be worth it when we receive that masterpiece.

Let us rest in God and allow God to take His time. His timeline is better than ours. No matter how frustratingly slow things are moving, remember, they are still moving. Even when you can’t see them, God is continually working in our lives. 1 Peter 5:6 says that God’s sovereign hand is constantly at work in our lives. God holds things off for the same reason he held off on fulfilling His promise to Sarah until His time. John MacArthur says the reason: “When His time came for the promise to be fulfilled, no one would be able to deny that this was indeed God’s doing. His plan all along was for Sarah to have her first child in her old age, after every prospect of a natural fulfillment of the prophecy was exhausted and after every earthly reason for hope was completely dead. Thus, YHWH would put His power on display.”[iv]

I know you’re frustrated. I know you want to be done waiting. I know you’re anxious to see whether this is going to work out. However, you’re perfectly placed. Stop trying to speed things up or rush. It would be like running on a treadmill toward what you’re waiting for. You’re going to be exhausted and still in the same place until God moves you. God is not in a hurry. He is in charge of time. Surrender over your timeline in exchange for His. His timeline is the one that will lead to the best results. Always. Like Sarah, even after years of the waiting, we must hold on to God, even if it’s by a thread of faith. Don’t give up. Some things are worth waiting for. When you’re in doubt, remember Isaiah 60:22, which says: “I the Lord, will make it happen in the right time.”[v]

[i] Daily Grace Co, Daughters of Grace [ii] John MacArthur, 12 Extraordinary Women, p. 44 [iii] John MacArthur, 12 Extraordinary Women, pp. 37-38 [iv] John MacArthur, 12 Extraordinary Women, p.38 [v] The Bible

By: Bible and Hot Cocoa (Instagram, YouTube, & TikTok: @bibleandhotcocoa)

Jules is the founder of Bible and Hot Cocoa. She is a law student with a passion for standing up for truth. In any free time, she loves to read, study theology, write, and draw or paint. Jules's favorite book of the Bible would have to be a tie among John, Psalms, Ephesians, and Romans (as of now), and her favorite figure besides Jesus is King David or Paul. Jules is currently writing her first devotional. You can follow along the writing journey by watching

the Book Writing Diaries, which is available on Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok.

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