Is it better to wait on the Lord or to move on the Lord’s behalf?
Those who want to wait on the Lord might point to the story of Mary and Martha in Luke 10? Martha was stressed running around and preparing food for Jesus. Mary was sitting at the feet of Jesus spending time with Him. Martha was upset and asked Jesus to make Mary help in the kitchen. Instead, Jesus rebuked Martha and complimented Mary. Doesn’t Jesus speak more highly of the sitter in this story than the mover?” Does God want us to be still or to do His will? Does God want us to stay still waiting for His presence, or does God want us to take His power to the world?“
In the story of Mary and Martha, Martha was rebuked for being too busy to sit at the feet of Jesus. Because of this, some people have taught that it is much better to sit in the presence of Jesus then it is to be busy doing the work of the ministry. This mentality has paralyzed some Christians and prevented them from taking action. Some people are seventy or eighty years old, still seeking the will of God. They have not accomplished much of anything. It is true that there is a time and a place for soaking in the presence of God. But while we are soaking, we must not forget that Jesus gave us a job to complete here on earth. Right before Jesus ascended to heaven, He told His disciples to go to the upper room and wait for the gift of the Holy Spirit. On the day of Pentecost, they were all filled with power from the Holy Spirit. Until they were filled, they waited. After they were filled, the wait was over and it was time for them to go. As one preacher said, ‘Until you are filled, don’t go; after you are filled, don’t stay.’
Often people make spiritual excuses for sitting still. They say, ‘I’m waiting on the Lord’ or ‘I don’t go because I am waiting for the Lord to reveal His will.’ ‘Ever since the day of Pentecost, we never again wait for the Lord, the Lord waits for us.’ I’m not saying we should not pray. Even Jesus went off by Himself every day to speak with His Father. However, we should pray as we move instead of using prayer as an excuse for not moving.
Oswald Chambers said, ‘See that you do not use the trick of prayer to cover up what you know you ought to do.’ Our praying, our listening to God, and our moving is a continuous process. As we move, we pray, then listen to God, then move again. Contrast the story of Mary and Martha with this this story in Mark 5. After Jesus cured the demon-possessed man, he begged Jesus for the opportunity to follow Him and sit at His feet. However, Jesus did not permit him, but instead commanded the man to go tell all his friends about his miracle. So, the man departed and proclaimed in the area of Decapolis all that Jesus had done for him. The word ‘Decapolis’ means ‘ten cities.’ The man who had been demon-possessed traveled from city to city, telling people about Jesus.
Later in Mark 7:31 when Jesus visited this region, He was able to perform great miracles because the faith of the people had been prepared by the testimony of the man who was set free from demons.” Psalm 46:10 says ‘Be still and know that I am God?’ But, did you ever read the second half of that verse? “It says, ‘I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth.’ How will God be exalted among the nations unless we take action and go proclaim His glory in all the nations of the earth? There is a place for sitting at the feet of Jesus and for being still in His presence, but the purpose for this time is to prepare us for taking action!” There are three types of people in the world. Those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who wonder, ‘What just happened?’” I do not want to sit around waiting for things to happen, I want to make them happen. What kind of person do you want to be?”