Contrary to Popular Belief, Waiting isn’t Always a Waste

 

You know those times when you feel like all you do is wait? Wait on God to answer. Wait on yourself to get up and do something. Wait for the love of your life. Wait to have a baby. Wait to get a job promotion, a raise, or a new job entirely. Wait to find your purpose, to feel content and fulfilled.
We have all been there. In fact, we’re all pretty much always there. Or maybe I’m the only one?
For myself, I can honestly say that, up to this point in my life, I seem to always be waiting on something. One prayer gets answered, one waiting period ends, but then there is always something new, something different to wait for.
I used to think that I just didn’t know how to be content. That’s something I’ve prayed about a lot, that God will teach me how to be content in the present. I don’t want to be so caught up in the future that I miss out on what is happening right now.
But I’ve also begun to realize that if I’m not waiting for anything, then I’m not dreaming, I’m not planning, I’m not expecting.photo-1424896041628-083a222840f6
If there is nothing that we’re waiting for then there is nothing that we are reaching and hoping for. There is no ‘more’ that we’re believing God has for us. So waiting isn’t a bad thing, it means we have goals. Waiting means we believe God has greater things in store.

I’ve spent years of my life being frustrated because I always seem to be waiting for something. I’ve gotten upset at myself and, ashamedly, at God because nothing seems to be happening. I have wasted so much time sitting around grumpy or depressed because, “I don’t understand why everyone else gets the things that I want. I don’t understand why God always tells me to just ‘Wait, wait, wait… and then wait some more!’ (You know it’s a valid conversation when the words ‘everyone’ and ‘always’ are being tossed around).”

Can I share a secret with you that God has been teaching me?

…Waiting does not have to be a waste.

Seriously. It’s true.
We have the choice to spend the time of waiting in frustration and depression because “nothing” is happening, or we can see the time of waiting as a blessing from God.
Instead of asking why our prayers aren’t being answered, we can ask God to show us where we need improvement in order to bear this blessing that we’re asking for. Instead of getting frustrated because ‘everyone’ else is getting what we want, we can rejoice with them and trust that they will do the same when it is our turn. Instead of asking, “When is this going to happen?!,” we can breathe a sigh of relief and say, “Thank you for this extra time to prepare.”

I feel like I am experiencing this in my life right now. For many of my teenage years I felt like all I did was wait for God to send me the love of my life. I eventually gave in to God and allowed Him to show me that I had to first learn how to be fulfilled and content in Him. I had to have time to fall so in love with Jesus that no one can ever replace Him. I had to experience God’s goodness, faithfulness, provision, and love so that, no matter how much I experience those things with my husband, I still experience them with God first.
That time of waiting, preparing, led me to this new season of my life, where I am waiting and preparing to marry my Fiance in just 3 short months. I’m using this time to pray and ask God to show me what it means to be a wife, a Godly wife. I’m asking God to show me how to pray for my husband, how to support, encourage, and love him. How to submit to him, and how to resolve conflicts with him. This season of waiting is the perfect time to prepare for this next season of marriage. And I’m SO thankful for the time to prepare.

Psalms 139 says that God knows us better than we even know ourselves. He knows our words before we say them. He knows our thoughts before we think them. He knew our entire story before we were ever even born. And, no matter how ready we may think we are for the things we’re praying for, God knows when we’re truly ready and He has promised He will not put more on us than we can handle (1 Cor. 10:13). God will not bless us with answered prayers until He knows we have had enough preparation to handle what we’re asking for.
And, more importantly, before giving us something else in our lives, God wants to know that He alone is more than enough and this new thing will not be a replacement or distraction from that truth. Anything that we receive from God is never meant to be a replacement for Him, but rather just another reason to love and glorify Him more than ever.

If you find yourself in the midst of waiting, I encourage you to dig into God’s Word deeper than ever. You will find that God is Love and, as such, He only wants what is best for His children. He knows when you’re ready, and He knows when you need a little more time to prepare.

 

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