Today in our brief study we will look at “things to do while you wait for release.” If you are able read Jeremiah 29:1-9
Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce. Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons, and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there and do not decrease. (Jer. 29:5-7, ESV)
A word had come from the LORD through the prophet Jeremiah concerning those exiled in Babylon. Their time in captivity was not to be wasted; it was not just a time of waiting for release but was to be fruitful and productive. God’s deliverance was promised, but in his time. In the meantime, they were to do several things, just as he instructed. Their waiting would not be a time of idleness or marking time. It was not to be a time consumed with self-pity, anxiety, discouragement, resentment, or frustration but a time of growth, preparation and anticipation.
At times, like the Israelites, we might be in a place we don’t want to be, longing and praying for release. We might be forced to wait until our finances or health are in a better place, waiting until that promotion comes through, waiting until we are emotionally, mentally of spiritually stronger, waiting until we have found the right person to go through life, waiting for something better to come along. All kinds of things and reasons keep us in a holding pattern, finding us feeling stuck. When we are ready to move on or to be free, waiting can be difficult and we are tempted to lose all desire, ambition, or hope but God has a good and encouraging word for us in these times. The command he gave the Israelites also applies to us today. We don’t need to waste our time of “captivity”, but we can use it to its fullest so when we are released to go forward, we have something to show for the time we spent there.
For Self-Awareness and Application:
What did God tell the Israelites to do while they waited in verses 5-7?
How well do you know yourself? how do you react when you are ready to move on? Are you productive and making good use of your time, or do you tend to lose patience?
Are you in a time of waiting right now? If so, what are you waiting on or for? Has it been a productive and fruitful time? In what ways can you apply God’s command to the Israelites to your own situation?
As you pray today, will you pray based upon self-awareness or for implementation?