Pray for Patience (Exodus 23:29–30)

“I will not drive them out from before you in one year, lest the land become desolate and the wild beasts multiply against you. Little by little I will drive them out from before you, until you have increased and possess the land.”
– Exodus 23:29–30

This is really interesting. So this is God saying to His people, “I’m gonna give you this land. This promised land that I’m gonna lead you to. But there are other people that are there now and I’m not gonna drive them out all at once, just like that. I will not drive them out from before you in one year because that would not be good. It would not be good for the land,” and so basically God says, “I’m gonna give you a little bit at a time, more and more and more until you have increased and possessed the land.” So I hear that and I immediately started thinking about my own life and I think about my impatience. I think, “I want God to do so many things in, around, through my life, family, church, and I want to see it now.”

We are prone to impatience and discontentment so we must ask God for grace that we might not lean on our own understanding.

Exodus 23:29–30 Shows Us That We Need Patience When Following God

But there’s patience in following God and in trusting God. This can cause us to be content sometimes with little by little and I don’t know if you struggle with impatience or with wanting to see everything happen now. I want to have answers now for what this or that should look like in our lives. As well as answers now for how this or that’s gonna be resolved. I can think of a variety of things right now that I’m praying through, that I would love to just be fixed tomorrow. And for me to have answers to this or that question right now, today.

But, in the middle of it all, God’s calling me to trust Him. To patiently trust Him and not to lose a sense of urgency. Life is short. We want to make every moment every day count at the same time as we obey God. We need to have patience. Patience as God works in ways that we may not see. God works in ways we may not realize he’s working in and He calls us to trust Him in the middle of that. So, God, I pray for patience in my life and others’ lives.

Asking God to Help Us Walk Patiently With Him

Lord, help us to walk patiently with You. Help us to trust in You, to seek You every day, to do all that You’re calling us to do that day, just as You were calling Your people in Exodus 23:29–30 to obey You and little by little to increase and possess that land fully. God, we pray for patience in our lives, to obey You in the small things and even in the moments where we want to see this or that happen now, but for whatever reason, You’re not bringing it about right now,

God, help us to trust in You. Help us to trust in You in a Proverbs 3 kind of way, with all our heart and lean not on our own understanding. Help us to continually acknowledge you in all our ways, trusting with patience that You will make our paths straight. We pray for patience today in Jesus’ name. Amen.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

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