December 15, 2012

Waiting While God Hides

Isaiah 8:11-18

I will wait for the LORD, who is hiding his face… I will put my trust in him.
—Isaiah 8:17


Having to wait is frustrating. We dislike waiting in the doctor’s office, in traffic, or in school. Many of us have also learned that waiting for God can be difficult, especially after praying for help or healing.

Isaiah speaks to our impatience. He knows that for various reasons God may “hide his face,” or withhold some of his favor, usually because his people have been rebellious. Isaiah also testifies that we can put our trust in God. Any of the people who thought Isaiah’s warnings were treasonous or who thought the Lord should meet all their demands would soon see that Isaiah was right.

People in every generation will come up with complaints about the God who hides. Stumbling over God’s hidden ways is a recurring problem that faces us in every season—and perhaps especially in Advent: God comes as a baby!

What could it mean that the Son of God would do this (see Philippians 2:5-8) and then live in obscurity for about 30 years before launching his ministry as the Savior? (See Luke 2; 3:23.)

Do we also take offense at the God who hides? When facing a disaster or disappointment, have you ever wondered, “Where is God? Why doesn’t he do something?”

What are our options here? Isaiah recommends, “I will put my trust in him.” Is that what you do?

Lord, it is often difficult to wait while we cannot see what you are doing. How could we ever guess your amazing plans? Please forgive us, and accept our praise. Amen.

About the author — Morris Greidanus

Beginning in 1964, Morris Greidanus served churches in Alberta, Ontario, and Michigan. He was campus pastor at the University of Toronto from 1968 to 1974. After retiring in 2002, he served on various interim tasks in churches and educational institutions until he passed away in 2017. Morris and his wife, Alice, were married 58 years and had three children, five grandchildren, and a growing number of great-grandchildren.

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