March ushers in new beginnings. The most evident turnover is seen in nature, where dry tree branches sprout baby blossoms, and lingering shivers of cold air are swept away by a pleasant breeze. This year, these traditional signs of a new season will emerge at a time most bizarre, when the world seems stuck in incessant patterns of lockdowns. These circumstances may leave some wondering how and when answers to prayer will manifest like the signs of springtime around them.
As believers, we must remember God isn't bound by time and season. Sprouting leaves remind us the earth is at work producing new life, and we must believe that God - the creator of the universe - is also already making way for answered prayers. How do we wait expectantly until we see our next steps spring forth? The Bible provides the following verses, all wonderfully aligned with the theme of spring and new beginnings.
1. We Put Our Trust in God Alone
This seems an obvious one, but it's foundational to our Christian faith. Jeremiah 17:7-8 even provides a metaphor between our trust and nature: "Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit."
2. God Works in Silence
From the book of Job (30:20) to Psalms (83:1) and many more, the Bible details story after story of when God was perceived as silent. God's way of working does not align with our own. "As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it'" (Isaiah 55:10-11). We see rain and snow as fleeting - fallen today and quietly evaporated tomorrow. Yet for God, they serve His divine purpose.
3. With Silence, There Are Signs
In fact, in those very times of silence - when our situations seem unchanging - God's work and favour abound. In Romans chapter 1, Paul declares that the invisible quality of God was made visible through creation. This means signs of God's wondrous works always surround us because we are in His creation. "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse" (Romans 1:20).
4. Waiting on God is an Act
We know faith without works is dead and similarly, idle waiting leads nowhere. Take this time to use your gifts and tend to your field. Proverbs 24:30-31 states, "I passed by the field of a sluggard, by the vineyard of a man lacking sense, and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns; the ground was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down."
5. Pray! Keep in Communion With Your Source
My favourite real-world example of this point is charging a cell phone. Most of us only allow the battery to drop to a low percentage, often not even reaching zero, and we hastily charge up. Yet, we sometimes allow our prayer life to reach deficiency. In seasons of waiting, the only way to keep our faith fully charged is to stay connected to the Author of our faith. The bonus with staying close to the source is we become sensitive to our Father's voice and know His work even in silence. Isaiah 43:19 states, "See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland."
Words by Nadia Sesay