Waiting for God's Presence in Prayer
An oft-overlooked aspect of prayer is waiting. Without realizing the importance of waiting, much of prayer is useless because we never really enter God’s Holy presence.
In Job 40:4, he speaks of putting his hand over his mouth because he is unworthy to speak to God. This silence helps get our hearts in tune for prayer until we sense His full presence and fellowship.
Madame Guyon, a Catholic mystic writer in the late 17th century said that “There was a period when I chose, A time and place for prayer … But now I seek that constant prayer, In inward stillness known.” She silently waited in the presence of God, praying unceasingly, as Paul commands us to do.
Prayer needs an early significant spiritual silence. It renews our dependence on God and signifies our submission to Him. Without that consolation of the Spirit and the subsequent renewal, our works become dead and “our message loses the ring which bespeaks its divine origin.”
Waiting places us in submission. It helps free us from being the center of attention and having to get our own way. It strips us of self-importance, and always having to be served or waited on…. It is the freedom to be second place; insignificant, and realize who liberating it is to be a nobody and not have to live up to others expectations. Allow waiting to create in you an inner subordination. Paul called himself a slave of Christ. We often expect our Master to serve us. Waiting breaks us of that.
Through waiting we see the real value of words/speaking/idle words and the idea of coming into the presence of a regent, a King. Waiting is a way to curb our desire for immediate gratification.
It’s when we say, like Thomas a’ Kempis, “As thou wilt, what thou wilt, when thou wilt,” as if we have nothing better to do than sit in the presence of the Lord. It isn’t for God to prepare for our coming, but for us to prepare for His (Psalm 46:10).
Great mens’ vision, inner strength and genius is wrought in silence… Gaining it mystically from God himself. It isn’t something taken from God, but given by Him.
Waiting is a discipline, we must become pupils.
We must be constantly renewed by Heavenly communion or our works become dead and powerless. Have you ever felt like that? Do they bespeak their divine origin?
“Amidst the multitude of works, the soul withers.” Too much to do leads to powerless and non-eternal service/ministry. Instead, those we minister to should say, “Didn’t we feel our hearts burn within us?”
Waiting consists of the silent surrender of my soul to God. It is not day dreaming, but concentrating on God’s presence and His approaching. It focuses our attention on His Heavenly voice until it’s as if He says, “OK, you’re ready.” Waiting isn’t a time of listening, trying to say anything, or getting answers. Waiting is simply waiting.
Waiting is silent love. We sit quietly in God’s presence, letting Him love you and minister to you, much like Paul describes the Holy Spirit in Romans 8. Wait until there is peace in your soul, until your spirit is submissive and no longer fluttering. Waiting is for the purpose of getting your heart in tune until you sense His full presence and fellowship.