I’m not a fan of waiting. It always feels like an incredibly terrible waste of time.
You see, I’m a very driven person. As a kid, I would not only force my younger siblings to run laps around the house, but I would time them so that each lap would be faster than the last. Before I had a five kids, I would do crazy things like finish a whole sewing project in one day or practice cello for hours on end. I’ll do the hard work and long hours as long as I can see the end result. I love the feeling of a finished project or a task completed.
So, it was very easy for me to look at the life God has given me and approach my circumstances with this same mindset: Push, work hard, and get to the end. Stay faithful, survive the crazy and make it to the good stuff. To me, the most important part was how it all ended, but God sure has other plans.
I’m starting to believe that God loves waiting. Why? Because it really isn’t waiting for him. God exists outside of time. He is not bound by the silly parameters we put on our lives.
He is God.
He is eternal and he is accomplishing his will that doesn’t need our time table.
Lord, you have been our dwelling place
throughout all generations.
Before the mountains were born
or you brought forth the whole world,
from everlasting to everlasting you are God.
You turn people back to dust,
saying, “Return to dust, you mortals.”
A thousand years in your sight
are like a day that has just gone by,
or like a watch in the night.
Yet you sweep people away in the sleep of death—
they are like the new grass of the morning:
In the morning it springs up new,
but by evening it is dry and withered. - Plasm 90:1-6
I’m learning that the seasons that have felt like waiting for me, have actually been critically important times that molded who I have become.
When we had two miscarriages, I struggled to see what good could come out of it and hated the long months not able to see another child in my arms. God saw that he was teaching me a very important lesson that I would carry for the rest of my life: My children are not mine. They are His and there is freedom when I let go of control and trust Him to take care of them.
When God called us to adopt through foster care, I thought the goal was helping a child from a difficult circumstance. God saw that he wanted to humble me and pull me closer to himself. He wanted me to become aware of the hurting and the suffering of others. He saw an opportunity to reveal the idol my family was becoming to me and point me to a better, more lasting object of worship: Himself.
When God led my husband and I to start a ministry fighting for the next generation, I saw winning the battle for the young people in the Church. In the waiting to see results, God saw late nights, challenges, and increasing our dependence on him. He saw training us to persevere, teaching us new skills, showing us the power of prayer and looking at life with an eternal perspective.
I’m guessing you too have found yourself in times of waiting in your life. When everything seems stuck at the worst possible moment and no matter how much you want to push forward towards a resolution, you are stuck… waiting. It’s in this challenging seasons that we can push back, become sour, feel sorry for ourselves and question God’s timing.
But don’t let Satan lie to you that God has made a mistake.
What God desires to work in your life through the waiting is of just as much importance as the end result we crave so badly.
God is in the waiting.
He is working in the season of wrestling.
He is achieving his perfect plan and purpose in his most excellent way with your best interest in mind.
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. - Romans 8:26-28
And if you think the waiting he has you in is unreasonable, think about the people of Israel. Can you imagine their wait? The first messianic prophecy was spoken to Adam, Eve and the serpent in the Garden of Eden:
So the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this,
“Cursed are you above all livestock
and all wild animals!
You will crawl on your belly
and you will eat dust
all the days of your life.
And I will put enmity
between you and the woman,
and between your offspring and hers;
he will crush your head,
and you will strike his heel.” - Genesis 3:14-15
Yet, thousands of years later, hundreds of more prophecies about his coming, and the people of God still waited and waited for the coming of the Messiah. God commanded them to be faithful in the waiting and trust him and he would do the rest.
God wasn’t late in keeping his promise.
No, when everything had been accomplished in the world that he desired to accomplish, then he revealed his very own son, his promised messiah.
But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. - Galatians 4:4
I love that line: “when the set time had fully come.” When everything was full to the brim with all that God desired. When the set time he already knew came, then the promise was fulfilled, just as he said it would be.
Oh, how we can trust that same wonderfully awesome, eternal God with our lives too. When the time fully comes, he will pull you out of your season of waiting. When all that he intends to accomplish through your waiting is completed, he will bring what he promises.
Rather than push back, become sour or question God, let him pull you closer. Dig deeper into his Word and seek his wisdom. Trust that he is working in your time of waiting and he is good.
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. - 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
Whether you are crying out to God for a broken marriage, fighting for a prodigal child, holding out for a change in your job, or seeking him in a time of illness, all he asks is that you remain faithful. Seek him in his Word. Hold to his promises. Build your life on his truth. Trust that he is good. He is sovereign, even in your season of waiting, and he is achieving an eternal glory through it.