Waiting With a Groan
Remember waiting for Christmas day as a child, counting those long, cold days that need to pass by in order to bring us that expectant excitement which only THAT DAY could bring? To a child that experience is “waiting with a groan” wishing that day would be TODAY, knowing that only the joy that Christmas brings could lift that timely despair. Yes, waiting with a groan is so real to a child, as well as to a CHILD of God who is living in anticipation of THAT DAY with the “love (of) his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:8). Yes, waiting with a groan is heightened to the spiritual realm in the lives of those living with the expectancy of his coming. So true of the Lord’s first coming to Bethlehem’s manger as the temple shepherds (tending to the paschal lambs) heard the angelic announcement of joy (Luke 2:10, 11). An awaited prophecy of promised redemption, was then in its fulfillment concerning the Savior, the Paschal “Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). That Lamb will come again, and “let us be glad and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb IS COME, and his wife hath made herself ready” (Revelation 19:7). Yes, be ready with a lively groan for his long-awaited arrival. There is a Second Coming on God’s prophetic calendar concerning full redemption, of which the spiritual believer is waiting with a groan. “For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. Even we ourselves grown within ourselves, waiting for the adoption to wit, the redemption of our body” (Romans 8:22, 23).
Waiting with a groan is the spiritual mindset of the expectant believer: As Jesus came for the purpose of redemption at his first coming, his second coming will be for a complete redemption as the Roman letter has promised. Oh, long for the manifestation of your adoption (to wit, the redemption of our body) as a child with joyful anticipation of that day of his appearing. In the meanwhile, wait with a child’s groan for the eternal gift wrapped and addressed to you, a new glorified body. Charles Spurgeon writes of that awaiting groan within: “It is not the groan of murmuring or complaint. It is a note of desire, rather than distress.” You see, the believer has received a deposit of HIS SPIRIT on the purchased possession of your salvation: “sealed unto the day of redemption” (Ephesians 4:30). Until that day, “we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven” (a new body, 2 Corinthians 5:2). “Is it worth the wait?” Yes, it is indeed, even since we groan, wishing it were TODAY, because this tainted, corrupt old nature that is bound to the flesh will be unrobed by HIM that day. That day will be full redemption day. We will don our eternal, sinless, robes of incorruption upon entering HIS glorious fitting room, having its door opening wide before us (I Corinthians 15:42)..
So, wait with a groan, we will, as a child of God with the anticipation of a child. The Lord is already near at eternity’s door, ready to break into time, His time for his return. Yes, let the groaning continue as the worthy wait continues; for “It will be worth it all, when we see Jesus” (Esther Kerr Rusthoi). Dear brother and sister, may we limit our groans to that which the Lord implants within the spiritual heart. Do groan in the Spirit alongside of the groanings of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:26) for the needs of your soul. Oh, dismiss those fleshly groans emanating from those bothersome infirmities that still reside imprisoned within, for which He prays (v. 26). With HIS groan within, all the confidence of God’s Word established in heaven now assures you of the Savior that has redeemed you, and will soon bestow your full redemption. So, be waiting with a groan as His Spirit groans within: HE is the Comforter called alongside in that wait for full redemption.
Yes, be waiting with a groan, and make it a spiritual groan with the constant aid of his Holy Spirit. Spurgeon writes, “Our sighs are sacred things, too holy and too personal.” He tells us why, “Our longings are for the Lord.” By waiting on the Lord while waiting with the Lord in your groaning, your days in the temporal will pass ever so joyfully with eternity’s anticipation enlivened by HIS Spirit’s groan within. “While we look not at the things, which are seen, but at the things which are not see: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18). Eternity waits as we wait, groaning for the ETERNAL ONE. If you are born again of the Spirit (John 3:3) and are filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18) you are a candidate for the wait with a groan. Oh, be of the number that groan for the Lord, with the promising prospect, so Biblical of his soon coming. As the prophets and seers foretold of his first coming that changed man’s history, with the Lord’s offer of redemption, his second coming is just as prophetic and certain as well, offering full redemption. Oh, be waiting with a spiritual groan, given by His Spirit concerning the wait worth waiting for. Be in contrast to that which the godless world is in wait. You can tell a lot about a man as to what he is groaning after; whether it be pride, position, power, prominence, and pleasure at the expense of what the Lord desires, implanted in the heart of the Spirit-filled man. Oh, be the man “who sighs after God, who is uneasy until he is made like Christ” (Spurgeon). When you are waiting with a groan, you can sing along with the Psalmist, “As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness, I shall be satisfied when I awake with thy likeness” (Psalm 17:15). No other likeness will do, that is why the spiritual man is waiting with a groan.