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Devotions > Wait For

24 Sep 2012

In John Chapter Fifteen Jesus uses the illustration of a vine and branches to help His disciples and us understand the vital union with God through His Spirit that is required in order that we may bear fruit.   John specifically states that we as branches must abide in the vine.    There is no doubt much activity defined by men as fruit, that does not attain to the definition of true fruit resulting from abiding in Jesus. 

 Jesus taught clearly that if we do not establish and maintain a vital intimate ABIDING relationship with Him we can do nothing.      Some of us have this problem:  deep in our hearts we do not really want to bear fruit; we would much rather eat it.   In our churches today we have developed a refined and sophisticated crowd that has become expertly qualified as consumers.   However Jesus’ plan for His followers and for us is that we should become experts in distribution.    In God’s Kingdom plan there is no job description for “Dead Sea Christians.”

Jesus made it clear that His plan was like a vine.   The branch holds on for dear life to the vine and the vine produces the fruit.   Not fruit for the vine, not fruit for the branch, but fruit for the Husbandman!

 We are to be fruit bearing branches in His vineyard.       Perhaps learning to bear much fruit begins with humility?   Humility embodies the instinctive desire for God’s glory.    Without doubt our desire to consume the fruit sprouts and grows out of the self-centeredness of pride.     When we deeply desire to bear much fruit for the Husbandman our desires will be initiated in love fueled by humility.

Obedience and faith no doubt also play a significant role in the production of “much fruit”.   However without humility, obedience and faith find little traction in the economy of heaven.     While in these days of hyper-consumerism, humility is not particularly a fashionable attribute, consumerism is opposed to humility and will not coexist with it.   Humility calls us to place our focus upon God, to always submit to Him and seek Him and wait for His plan.

Recently meditating on a couple of scriptures in the first chapter of Acts a couple of words seemed to stick in and circle my mind.   Specifically the words wait for in Acts 1:4 seemed to be turning through my mind.   

  Acts 1:4-5 (AMP)
4 And while being in their company and eating with them, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem but to wait for what the Father had promised, Of which [He said] you have heard Me speak.
5 For John baptized with water, but not many days from now you shall be baptized with (placed in, introduced into) the Holy Spirit. (emphasis added)

Then God seemed to speak.   What I heard was … “if you want Me to move, you must wait for me.   But if you want to move I will be happy to wait for you.”   While these words were still sinking in, there came a prevailing sense, not in words but perhaps even stronger, that we cannot have this both ways.  If we desire a mighty move of God we must wait for Him and watch and pray.

Spiros Zodhiates’ Key Word Bible reveals the following information regarding the English words translated wait for and is helpful toward understanding what Luke, under the direction of the Holy Spirit, is attempting to communicate.    The words translated wait for  are in the Greek a single word, perimeno, which like many is built up from two Greek words peri which carries the meaning of around or related to.   From this word we get our word perimeter which means around something specific.   The other Greek word meno carries the meaning of waiting or staying around.  This is the word used in John Chapter 15 translated abide.   We might say about this word that as long as we are performing this verb meno, we are not going any place.  We might consider the word perimeno to mean that we should wait around with a specific purpose and expectation.

From this very rudimentary understanding of the original language, we can see the strength of these words “wait for.”    Luke wanted us to know that when Jesus commanded His disciples to wait for they were to unquestionably wait and they were to wait for something very specific.  This was not an activity of wasting time, but rather an intensely focused activity of waiting.    Those words coming from our Western mind set are difficult to understand.    We by and large understand the idea of waiting for almost anything as a very negative and wasteful activity.   This waiting for, being the exact opposite, was the most effective and productive activity that these disciples could possibly entertain.

Of course these words and ideas do not apply to those things that we can do on our own.   But only to the things that are supernatural, that are God sized, that of necessity require the Holy Spirit to move.    For in this context we are being instructed to wait specifically on a movement, an action, a supernatural work of God.     In your view, what seems best?   To work hard and plan diligently and accomplish all we can for God?   Or to wait for, and pray and ask God to move in supernatural ways to bring amazing glory to His Name?

A friend once told me that God is in the birthing business but we think manufacturing is the best.  When we examine birth we find there is always waiting for.    Is it possible that God in His creation design is attempting to provide instruction for us?

Consider these possibilities.   When we wait and pray and cry out to God to move, this waiting and praying not only provides essential preparation to open a way for God to move, but it is likewise the essential grounding of the hearts of His servants whom the Lord has called to be a part of His mighty movement of revival.   Friends, God will use our obedient waiting for Him for our good and for His glory!

2 Chronicles 7:14 (KJV)
14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.  

Jeff Wiliams