But, I will sing of your strength, and revel at dawn in your mercy; You have been my stronghold, my refuge in the day of distress. (Psalm 59:16)
Lamentations is a book of sorrowful songs or poems. It’s author, Jeremiah, wrote about the fall of Jerusalem to the Babylonians in 586 B.C. He warned of its destruction, watched it take place, and then sadly reflected on it in order to teach God’s people that disobedience to the Lord results in immense suffering and distress.
Jeremiah also wrote that restoration would come.
For no one is cast off by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. (Lamentations 3:31-32)
There’s hope in the midst of despair when we wait on the Lord.
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. (Lamentations 3:21-32)
It’s important to know that even when we stray the Lord offers compassion and restoration. Better yet, he offers hope even when the source of suffering and condemnation is outside of our control.
I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” (Lamentations 3:24)
But what did Jeremiah mean by the word “wait”?
Here, the Hebrew word “wait” is translated qavah, defined as “look for,” “hope,” or “expect.” Waiting on the Lord does not mean stopping all activity, quieting ourselves, and emptying our minds with a blank stare.
We wait for something we expect. We wait in anticipation and expectation.
Wait on the Lord in anticipation and expectation. Expect anything from God that is consistent with his nature. Expect God to do anything that he has revealed as his will, or implied from his character. He is faithful, dependable, and reliable. The Lord does what he says he will do.