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Posts Tagged ‘waiting on God’

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Road trips are great for a little while, but there is always that moment of, “dang! How long have we been in this car!?”

The start of a road trip is awesome. You’ve got your snacks, tunes, and laughter. The end goal is fast approaching, and anxiously awaiting your arrival.

What about the in between?

There is always an in between before arriving at our destination.

I have been reading the Old Testament lately. I have realized a pattern has developed by the time Saul becomes King. Each person who was anointed by God went through and in between time.

God had a destination for Joseph, but years of development took place before he was appointed into leadership. Moses had some time in the desert before God used him to set his people free. Saul did not go immediately to the castle to be king. David went back to the field before his time of king came to pass. Jesus even needed time to develop in wisdom, stature, and favor.

God always includes an in between time.

However, I have also noticed that each person had a time of rising to the occasion – each person was given their own opportunity.

I have a dream, but feel very much coasting in the in between time. Questions arise in my heart, and hope flickers. Wondering what or if God is doing something.

Starting out somewhere and arriving at a destination is not the most important part to God. Who you are when you get there matters.

God ushered all of his leaders into place. He gave them all the perfect opportunities. I am sure they all had questions stirring deep down of why they were still in “the field” when their hearts beat for more.

They all had to choose to believe in the one who gave the dream. They all had to trust the words of the one who has something ready for them. Even when the in between felt unnecessary, they all had to wait and develop.

I do to. As much as I fight it, I need the in between. I hope I am ready for that opportunity. Honestly, I still hope it is sooner than later, but I will wait. Well… trying really hard to.

Are you waiting in your in between time?

What does development look like for you?

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Sometimes the phrase, “Hindsight is 20/20” just ticks me off. I have a love/hate relationship with it.

I appreciate looking back on a season of life and having “aha” moments, but I always wish that I would be able to see those things as they are happening.

We do learn from our mistakes as we look back on them. We gain wisdom from seeing clearly what God might have been up to as we reflect, but I just wonder why it takes looking back some times.

The grieving process is one of those ongoing things in my life where I usually have to look back to make sense of my heart.

Even now, I shake my head at the ways the wounds of grief manifest itself in my responses, fears, insecurities, and doubts.

I wonder.

I wonder why doesn’t God reveal the total effects of pain and hurt in our lives all at once? Why am I still just realizing some of the effects of pain – pain that seems so long ago – playing out in my everyday responses?

I find myself just asking, “God why not just show me? Why not just show me the effects of pain all at once when it happens?

It is in these times of asking that I remember a story in Exodus where God has a similar conversation with Moses. God is explaining to Moses that he is going to lead His people from the desert into the promise land. He talks about all of the foreign tribes and lands they will conquer to take over the promise land.

Just when you are getting all psyched up from the list of successes God is going bring for His people, he adds in a little part that deserves a double take. It’s one of those parts that should be italicized and called “fine print.

God tells Moses, “But I will not drive them out in a single year, because the land would become desolate and the wild animals too numerous for you.  Little by little I will drive them out before you, until you have increased enough to take possession of the land.”

Wait…wha….?

All of those great victories He just spent time talking about in the verses before are not going to happen all at once!?

I am learning that God is a God of process. It is because of His grace that we do not get to feel or even see the effects of everything all at once. It would be too much to handle.

We need His grace of the “little by little” in our lives. I may throw tantrums for understanding things through hindsight, but God cares about my abilities to handle things.

Little by little, God is doing something in us.

Little by little we get to the place of being able to take “possession” of something going on in our hearts and lives.

Little by little is where wisdom and understanding comes in.

Little by little is His grace for us.

What is something going on in your life that you wish God would show you more about what’s happening?

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Have you ever experienced a time where you found yourself in a waiting season?

I will admit to being a person who struggles when it comes to waiting.

Our fast paced culture does not enable waiting well. People who are waiting constantly look at their watches and are most likely agitated.

Waiting can be accompanied by fear as well. Waiting can stir up the fear that someone has forgotten us. Fears that arise when in a waiting season can challenge our sense of value.

How do you wait well?

How do you wait well when the season of waiting seems long?

Now waiting for the bus is way different then waiting on a dream or direction. Waiting can cause us to question and doubt. Waiting requires faith and trust. Those two words are very challenging.

Andy Stanley did a great series that tackled the question of, “what do you do when you feel like God is inattentive, uncooperative, and late?

All three of those words come to mind when experiencing a waiting season. I battle with those words a lot, and sometimes on a daily basis, in this waiting period. It is hard not to play the comparison game and even be jealous when it comes to waiting.

Waiting seasons challenge my faith and trust. Waiting is lonely.

Andy talked about a key verse that speaks directly into the heart of waiting. Jesus said, “Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.

Such a powerful verse! This verse speaks to waiting. Waiting comes with the expectation that God should do something—that he should do something for me. Honestly, I have expected God to do something and act in my waiting. I used the words that God knows my situation; he is able to change it.

Ever felt like God is silent when you don’t think he should be? Ever felt like he must not care if he is not doing something?

We can start to equate our situations with how God feels about us.

Blessed are those who do not stumble when we feel like God is inattentive, uncooperative, and late. Blessed are those who choose faith even though the waiting continues. Blessed are those who choose to hope when hoping seems in vain. Blessed are those who still know God is able regardless of the waiting time.

I am holding on to the truth of Andy words that, “our situations do NOT reflect the way God feels about us.

I am working on waiting well. For me, that means not letting it affect the perception of my value and self-worth.

What does waiting well look like for you?

 

 

 

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I am a sucker for good wisdom and spoken truth. I love listening to podcasts of great speakers. I usually listen while I run. Let’s be honest, I need something to take my mind off of the running part.

There are times when a talk can just stick with me. I listened to one other day by Andy Stanley that was so challenging, and so good for my heart.

The essence of his message highlighted faith that does not waver when God seems to be “absent, inattentive or late.” This was such a powerful talk.

Andy stated something that I have been marinating on. He said, “When you go through something, I pray. When I go through something, I doubt.”

This statement is such a great faith challenge. We all experience times where God seems to feel inattentive and late to our situations. What do we do in the “in-between” times? We are great at praying for others, and believing God for their situations. However, in reality most other people’s circumstances do not challenge our faith. It is only when we experience something hard personally that our faith really gets challenged.

My faith is challenged by this statement; even now I sit waiting and wondering if why God feels delayed. If I am being most honest, my heart is also confronted by just how selfish I really am.

When my faith wavers because I think God is being inattentive, or late, my expectation is that God should be doing something for me. When I go through hard times, I expect God to show up and save me from it. Rarely is my first thought, “This circumstance has more to teach me than God just saving me from it.

What do we do when God seems absent, inattentive, and late?

We doubt

Usually when doubt starts to take root, we talk over. Self-sufficiency kicks in and we say, “Thanks, but no thanks God, I’ve got this.

I am becoming more and more aware of my doubt and selfishness. In my selfishness, I take over too often. I am realizing that I have not been waiting well. I have called my season “waiting”, but in some ways, I can see that I have just been hiding behind the term while selfishly trying to make life work.

I wish my first thought was to believe. I wish I more readily remembered what God has already done for me instead of demand more. I wish I waited well.

The truth, my faith needs some work. Faith is not what kicks in first. Faith is not the lenses through which I see my circumstances. I am working on my responses.

In what ways do you feel like God might be absent, inattentive, or late?

 

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Road trips are great for a little while, but there is always that moment of, “dang! How long have we been in this car!?”

The start of a road trip is awesome. You’ve got your snacks, tunes, and laughter. The end goal is fast approaching, and anxiously awaiting your arrival.

What about the in between? There is always an in between before arriving at our destination.

I have been reading the Old Testament lately. I have realized a pattern has developed by the time Saul becomes King. Each person who was anointed by God went through and in between time.

God had a destination for Joseph, but years of development took place before he was appointed into leadership. Moses had some time in the desert before God used him to set his people free. Saul did not go immediately to the castle to be king. David went back to the field before his time of king came to pass. Jesus even needed time to develop in wisdom, stature, and favor.

God always includes an in between time. However, I have also noticed that each person had a time of rising to the occasion – each person was given their own opportunity.

This has given me understanding for the waiting I feel. I have a dream, but feel very much coasting in the in between time. Questions arise in my heart, and hope flickers. God is doing something.

Starting out somewhere and arriving at a destination is not the most important part to God. Getting there matters.

God ushered all of his leaders into place. He gave them all the perfect opportunities. I am sure they all had questions stirring deep down of why they were still in “the field” when their hearts beat for more.

They all had to choose to believe in the one who gave the dream. They all had to trust the words of the one who has something ready for them. Even when the in between felt unnecessary, they all had to wait and develop.

I do to. As much as I fight it, I need the in between. I hope I am ready for that opportunity. Honestly, I still hope it is sooner than later, but I will wait. Well… trying really hard to.

Are you waiting in your in between time?

What does development look like for you?

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The present is the hardest thing to put words to. The present is filled with the most question marks and unknowns. Present is usually filled with anxious waiting or discontentment. I think part of that restlessness is just right. God uses restlessness in me as momentum to move forward. Some discontentment is a good tool to help propel us into taking steps needed.

I have loved listening to where people are presently wrestling. I’ve loved the comments and texts that came in yesterday about where people are, presently.

I value hearing where life is in the midst of for anyone.

So what is the present for me?

I have been experiencing a LONG season of restlessness. Over the past couple of years my life has changed dramatically. I am no longer on the career track I thought I should be on. I am actually stepping out into the speaking track where my heart is most passionate. This is a place that feels so far beyond me that it’s probably right where I need to be.

Life of big dreams…

I have dreams and desires that fall into a terrifying newness of everything. I desire for new in almost every area of life. I am looking for a new job, new place/city to move to, new church, new community, and new everything.

If I were being most honest, I am so entirely frustrated and scared with where my life is at the moment. I have more “I don’t knows” now then I have ever felt. I have cried more in my waiting than ever before. I feel like I have been sitting, welly eyed, on the bench for so long.  I am ready.

Am I?

I think the answer to that is what scares me the most. I wonder all of the time how long I will feel this restless and frustrated. I feel stuck in the middle of the place I once was, and now look hazy, and the place I am going; a place which has not shown its shore line yet. I am waiting.

I battle with forgetting what my element looks like. I am so far out of being in the areas of my gifting that I feel exhausted most every day with no light at the end of the tunnel. I have to hope through tears, but it sucks to sit in those places.

I wrestle with filling my time and empty places and call it waiting. In the end I really do want what he wants. I know in my head that he is life, and that this is what/who I want. Waiting for that, and trusting for that is so dang hard. I don’t always make the most beneficial choices for waiting. He is patient and gentle.

In the midst of it all, I am learning more about character than ever before. For that I am grateful. Still in the midst, I have more tears than contentment.

Where are you honestly?

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When I was in college, I went on this weekend excursion with an organization called Outward Bound. I was part of a leadership program, and this was one of our training weekends.

There was not much that was easy or fun about anything we did that weekend. Twenty of us split into two medium size row boats, and that’s where we spent the next three days. We learned teamwork, sailing, and sweating out the hard.

There was an anchor watch scheduled for every night. We would split up in to pairs and take a shift. An anchor watch is just as exciting as it sounds. We sat and watched to make sure we didn’t drift from where we were anchored.

These were long hours. It was hard to stay patient. The waiting seemed like forever. The boredom only got worse as the night progressed. The minutes seemed to creep by until our shift was up.

On one of my shifts I experienced something different. The shift was hard and seemed to creep by. It was hard to stay awake and push through, but then the sun started to rise and light fill up the sky. It was breath taking. I stared as this bright orange ball rose above the horizon and wake up the waters. It was amazing.

Our lives experience these night watches as well. There are times in life where the night seems so long, and every minute seems like an hour; emotions keep tossing our thoughts around on the waves of our own anchor watch.

One of the first things I tell my clients in counseling is that during the process of our sessions, life will feel like it’s getting worse before it gets better. The process can feel like forever, but there is an exhale to come at the end. Honestly, only half the people I have walked through counseling with get to the light at the end of the tunnel part.

It is hard to feel worse before we feel better. I know I have some patterns and false beliefs in me that need unlearning. That takes time. Transformation takes time, especially to stick. We are not a people who commit to choosing the hard all that often. We are also not a people who like to wait. Both of my hands are raised for these two things. \o/.

I have found truth new truth in the words of Psalm 30:5 – “weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.

God cares about our deepest parts. He cares about anything and everything that keeps us from being close to him. My tree needs some fruit adjustment to get to the rejoicing.

He just asks me to wait, keeping believing, and I promise the sun will rise.

Anyone experiencing a long night?

 

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