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When Your Prayers Bounce Off the Ceiling: Wait on the Lord

When Your Prayers Bounce Off the Ceiling: Wait on the Lord

I was rewinding an old VHS tape to show Christian and his friends some footage from our trip to Scotland when he was two years old.

“This is taking forever,” one of them said.
“Does this thing run on gas?” another asked.
I laughed at their horror of anything that takes longer than three seconds to load. We live in such a “now” culture, where everything is immediately available at the touch of a button or with a voice command.


It isn’t easy, especially when we are waiting on God, but Scripture is filled with the stories of men and women who experienced agonizing periods of waiting on the Lord.

Abram and Sarai waited twenty-five years for God to fulfill His promise that someday they would have a child. When Isaac was born, they were old enough to be great-grandparents!

The Israelites suffered for more than four hundred years in Egyptian slavery, waiting for God to deliver them from their cruel bondage.

After Samuel had anointed him king of Israel, David waited years to assume the throne that was rightfully his.

For three long days Jesus’ followers waited for hope to break through their darkest despair as His battered body lay in the tomb.

Jesus rose from the dead and returned to the Father to prepare a home for us, and we who call Him Savior and Lord have been waiting more than two thousand years for Him to return.

The difficult work of waiting often seems to be part of our relationship with God. His timing is just different from ours. The apostle Peter wrote,

Do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. — 2 Peter 3:8

What does this have to do with our quiet time with God? When I enter into that space with God, I often experience a period of waiting, and I think that comes with being human. Don’t be discouraged if your struggle to quiet your mind or you feel as if your prayers are bouncing off the ceiling. Grant yourself the gift of relaxing into the wait. If you gently continue to turn your heart back to Him, simply waiting on Him, you will experience His presence.

And His presence will be worth the wait!

I choose to step into the quiet and wait for You.

Five Minutes in the Word

I wait for You; You will answer, Lord my God. — Psalm 38:15

Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord. — Psalm 31:24

In the morning, Lord, You hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before You and wait expectantly. — Psalm 5:3

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. — Psalm 37:7

We wait in hope for the Lord; He is our help and our shield. — Psalm 33:20

Excerpted with permission from 5 Minutes with Jesus: Quiet Time for Your Soul by Sheila Walsh, copyright Sheila Walsh.

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Your Turn

Have you been waiting for what seems like ages? Keep hoping. Are you tired of praying and not hearing or seeing an answer? Keep going. Does it feel like your prayers are bouncing off the ceiling, not even making it to the ears of God? Keep praying. Come share your thoughts with us about waiting on the Lord in prayer on our blog. We want to hear from you!