Archive for the ‘Waiting on the LORD’ Tag

When to Wait, When to Act   Leave a comment



Saul missed the what-God-wants of his life and generation by failing to wait. While we remember his failure for full obedience with regard to Agag and the Amelekites, Saul’s failure to wait for Samuel reset his whole life and leadership long before this more obvious failure occurred.

Saul’s heart was revealed by his failure to wait. Saul’s heart was further revealed when he failed to act. By the time he got to God’s heart about the Amelekites, Saul’s heart held no secrets. In the end, we see his heart included the witchcraft rebellion of which Samuel spoke.

Saul has a heart problem, so Samuel says, God will now choose someone else to lead His people, a man who has God’s heart.

King Saul failed to wait when God waited and failed to act when God acted. He didn’t have God’s heart. When leaders fail to have God’s heart, they fail to represent God, and people begin to respond to without God’s heart. Good leaders so represent God’s heart that everyone who follows them responds to God’s heart.

Saul also missed it by failing to act. In each case, his failure revealed a fatal flaw in his heart. He remained a leader for decades but he never fulfilled his purpose, and we know this because he didn’t have a son to sit on his throne. Saul’s ultimate failure was his failure to properly father, and that failure cost everyone, not just Saul.

Part of the dismal failure of Saul is traceable back to the people of Israel who demanded a king “like the nations around them.” Not just a king, but a king that functioned like the heathen! Saul seems to be such a king, and the failures of Saul seemed to further explain this predicament – God gives us the leadership we deserve.

In this story, Saul fails to wait for God’s appointed time with Samuel and fails to act in God’s appointed time to bring deliverance through Jonathan.

In each case, it is the people who characterize his responses more than God or his leadership assignment. Saul is the people’s choice and chooses the people over God.

The people become impatient and wander off so Saul responds to their impatience and acts rashly. The people hide in fear and Saul responds by hiding in Migron – which means “fear, on the edge, precipice.”

Saul is the ultimate political spirit leader, and his leadership reinforces the prevailing conditions rather than confronting those conditions with God’s leadership. Still, in these circumstances, God does mighty things.

Saul ends up with only 600 men and surrounds himself with them. Jonathan is left with only one person who can help him carry around his armor, but he attacks with the revelation Saul failed to wait for. A great victory begins with one man and his servant. Before the day is over, Jonathan has rallied the whole army, and those who turned traitor with the enemy came back to Israel. Before the battle is over, the thousands who wandered away are fighting the enemy.

About the time you think you have an army, God will prune it down to those who are ready to fight.

About the time you think God won’t keep His appointment and speak strategy, He will speak.

About the time you think you lack necessary weapons, people, and money to wage war, God will use what you have and give you what was stolen from you.

About the time you think you need more people before you obey God, you will discover that what you need is a releasing word that reveals a strategic point of attack that will release the fear that binds God’s people into the enemy they are afraid of.

When the enemy army are confronted, the fear that holds God’s people becomes the weapon that confuses the enemy. Fear to wait. Fear to act. Fear confuses your heart first, then your mind, then your behavior. Fear has a smell that everyone around you can smell.

Jonathan attacked the raiding party. This was the strategy of Philistia to terrorize the Israelis into fear. So, Jonathan attacked the source of fear in order to release it back upon the enemy. That’s strategy! God reveals the enemy and his strategy, then He reveals His strategy to defeat the spiritual condition, the heart condition, that defeats His people. When God people act like God’s people, they always win!

Saul fed the fear, was a product of the people’s response. This is not kingdom leadership. The problem is clearly both Saul and the people, for neither has God’s heart. God’s method of getting His heart into His people is called “leadership.” Saul failed in producing God’s leadership, but David succeeded.

The battle for the heart of the kingdom is fought in the hearts of its leaders.

The Waiting is the Hardest Part   1 comment


This is from the blog Learning to Be:

That song from Tom Petty has been rattling around in my head after my Life Group’s discussion about Genesis.

The patience….and impatience….of God’s people in Genesis. God’s timing. How they waited….or didn’t wait for God’s timing. How their patience…or impatience…. affected God’s blessings on their lives.

I love to read the stories of Abraham and Sarah, Rebekah and Isaac, Jacob, Leah and Rachel, among others.  They’re fascinating, human, flawed.  They make mistakes, but God loves them anyway. He has plans for them, and even during their impatience, HE is patient. And faithful. And during it all, they learn something about Him.

Now insert our names for theirs….because their story is our story.

How often do we get impatient for God to work? To answer our prayers. To fulfill His promises. How often do we try to make it happen, without waiting for God’s timing?

Yes, the waiting is hard.

Sometimes, we are like Sarah. I actually think she had faith in God’s promise of a son but thought she needed to take a ACTIVE role and make it happen with Hagar.  Isn’t that pretty common? We’re not really sure where/when/how to take action and when to just wait.  We think we need to do God’s work for Him because He is not doing it to our satisfaction and timing.

Rebekah and her favored son Jacob just couldn’t wait for God to fulfill His promise that the youngest twin would be the one through whom God’s promise & blessing would pass. They schemed to do the work themselves, taking both Esau’s birthright – he actually lost that due to his own impatience – and the blessing from his father Isaac away from him.  And in doing so, missed out on the path & blessings God had in store for them.

Jacob was learning to be fairly patient later as he waited to wed Rachel and for Laban to release him, but he still wanted to be in charge. God had to wrestle with him before Jacob acknowledged that He was in control.  And I’m pretty sure it was NOT easy for Noah to wait, to be patient for God’s timing.

The waiting is hard. But God still works in the waiting. He works ON us. He works IN us.  He’s not making us wait for no reason. He’s got His own reason.  I’m reminded of one of Moses’ last speeches to the Israelites in Deuteronomy 8:2:

Don’t forget how the Lord your God has led you through the desert for the past forty years. He wanted to find out if you were truly willing to obey him and depend on him, so he made you go hungry. Then he gave you manna, a kind of food that you and your ancestors had never even heard about. The Lord was teaching you that people need more than food to live—they need every word that the Lord has spoken.

Plus I wonder how many blessings I’ve missed due to my tendency to run out ahead of God…

Learning to Be
When to Wait, When to Act


“Everything will come in due course, if you have the gumption to wait for it.”

–Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Waiting on the LORD   1 comment

waiting on the lord

Here are some emails recently sent between Leslie Manto and myself:

“In patience possess ye your souls.”

Waiting can also be dying to self. Waiting on the Lord is one of the best things we can do. We wait on Him, He tells us what to do and where to go and we go.

–Tim Shey

[I left the preceding message on Leslie’s Waiting on God blog]

Thank you for that confirmation. Dying to self has been the theme this summer and autumn. Not sure if stuff is dead in me yet. Have to wait on God to do that, too. 🙂 But I came up here to Salmon for forty days and forty nights to hear from God. Even now I still don’t know exactly what to do. But I know waiting for his direction is imperative and no matter how long it takes…that is what I have to do.

God has trained you to trust Him completely in all things. You’ve had no nest or foxhole to call your own. He has cared for you so wonderfully and given you many homes and friends. That alone is a needed message to those in the Body of Christ who trust in the things of this world and the princes of this world.

Thanks for your blog. It is quite extensive but I’m checking it out a little bit at a time. You remind me of many of prophets and evangelists who braved the unknown to speak the truth wherever God took them.

I’ll be praying for your journey and a good place to land! That little deer caught in the fence made me cry! So glad Jesus cared about it enough to delay your journey. I hope its Mom found it again. May the LORD bless you, protect you and comfort you daily.

In Yeshua,

–Leslie Manto

Dear Leslie:

Just hitchhiked to Victor, Idaho from Dubois, Wyoming today. About the little deer getting caught in the fence: it looked so helpless–it was hung up in the barb wire and it probably lost circulation in its back legs. It really felt good to free it from its entanglement. I know it was very frightened of me when I walked over to help it out. It started bawling–I have never heard a deer bawl like that before. I am grateful that Brenda picked me up and took me to Dubois. We had some really intense fellowship. Brenda is what I would call “crazy in love with Jesus!” I am grateful that she told me that dream about Egypt.

I have met Christians that seem to want an instant fix from their troubles. Dying to self is not an event, but a process. I am grateful for what the Lord has done in my life. So many things that I used to think were important to me have died out in my life. Paul once wrote that all he wanted to know was Jesus and Him crucified. If we are truly surrendered to Christ, things die out eventually and our life IS Jesus and Him crucified–our life IS the sermon. And the people we meet in our lives feed off of the Bread of Life living within us: the Lord Jesus Christ.

I could be heading back into Montana in a couple of days.

Take care.


Hello Tim,

Thank you for your kind notes. What you are doing is not extraordinary, it should be the ordinary walk of believers who love Jesus and seek to follow Him by way of Holy Spirit. I have tried to walk in this way for many years and have been misunderstood, maligned and even mocked as I am sure you have experienced. But, that is the way of the cross. God cared about the fawn caught in the fence. He cares about his children, his creation, it is a pleasure to be loved by Him.

You are in some of His most beautiful creation, or you were (Wyoming, Montana). I don’t know where you are now but pray the LORD is watching over you moment by moment.

You have a journey in which you must rely upon the LORD in every situation. That is good. That is right. Keep encouraging others to do the same. I will pray for you.

I get weary of religion and politics and even literature. I know you love literature by your profile on your blog. I too love literature and music, and still do, but the Word of God and worship to Him in music are my highest delights now. Even now, I am in one of my favorite hangouts, the library on the free internet, which is a blessing….but I no longer get excited about all the books and music available. It is sometimes a quandary because I don’t want to love the world anymore, but I’m still in it.

I was willing to stay in Salmon amongst the kind people there. I met some wonderful brothers and sisters at the church there where Mike and Anne go. But the Lord did not open a door for me to stay.

I came back to Salt Lake City where I live, but at the moment have no income.. I’m tired of trying to figure things out in my own mind. It only causes worry, anxiety and grief. The world and people walking in their own strength give me too much advice and it brings only confusion to me. Today I woke up and read the Word, (in Genesis with Noah, Psalm 119, near the end, Colossians and Revelation). I’ve been writing the books out for about 8 months now and see new things that way.

Yesterday I went to Calvary Campus, a new fellowship, that has expanded from a Bible Study. It’s the only place in Utah where I have found the plumbline of the Word going on. Sean MacCraney ) is a fiery evangelist, teacher. He was born again into the Kingdom of God through Christ Jesus our LORD after being 40 years in the Mormon religion. There are a lot of Mormons coming out and come to hear Sean preach. Still there were a lot of “baby Christians” there running things. They meet in the Philosophy Building 🙂 at the University of Utah on Sunday.

I was raised in Utah in the Mormon church, four generations on both sides. Jesus saved my brother Vincent first at USU as he was confronted by a Christian (Campus Crusader) who challenged his knowledge of the Bible. (Vince is logical, analytical and reasonable. He is now a physicist) Three months later the LORD saved me as I was going to give up on this world and go kill myself at age 25. Vince told me that Jesus had given him PEACE. I had no idea what peace was in my shattered life. God drew me with that word, and instead of turning on the gas oven and killing myself (a la Sylvia Plath) I opened up an old seminary Bible I carried around and never read (yes, Mormons have King James Bibles) and turned to the book of John….chapter 14 and began reading “Do not be troubled, in my Father’s house are many mansions, and I go to prepare a place for you.” It was like somebody wanted me. Somebody loved me. I cried out, “IF YOU ARE REAL JESUS, SHOW ME NOW,!” I was broken, sin-filled and desperate. He heard me. I was filled with his PEACE, which flooded me like a river and I kept reading and didn’t put the Bible down until I fell asleep. When I woke up in the morning, the PEACE that passes understanding was still there (and has not left to this day, 30 years later.) I read that I had been born-again. I believed it and began a new life.

As you know, when you believe in Jesus, then a sword comes between you and those who do not love him and many of those were my Mormon family. But as you know, the Lord leads the lonely into families and I had a new family now, those who do the will of God.

My only desire now is to stay right with God. I have repented of all God has showed me of my own sin and folly. I am on my face seeking his will alone and asking him to put to death all my desires, “needs” and dreams.

As you stated so aptly in your last e-mail:

“Dying to self is not an event, but a process. I am grateful for what the Lord has done in my life. So many things that I used to think were important to me have died out in my life. Paul once wrote that all he wanted to know was Jesus and Him crucified. If we are truly surrendered to Christ, things die out eventually and our life IS Jesus and Him crucified–our life IS the sermon. And the people we meet in our lives feed off of the Bread of Life living within us: the Lord Jesus Christ.”

So, there we are back at the original subject. Thanks for listening or reading, rather. Remember all the wounded as you travel. I think maybe the little fawn was a reminder from the Lord to you, that so many are caught in fences, whether of their own choosing or of an error in judgement. Doesn’t matter, they are wounded and need the healing touch of Jesus through his people. May God give you wisdom and discernment this day in your journey.

p.s. You are not scary looking, you are just big, but the Lord lets people pick you up and it is His ways, not ours. We all look at the outward appearance, but of course God looks at the heart and draws men to himself by His Holy Spirit.

Gotta go now….wherever He leads me. Looking for a “HIRING NOW” sign. 🙂

May God take care of you!

–Leslie Manto

When to Wait, When to Act

Posted December 26, 2012 by Tim Shey in Uncategorized

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