By nature I’m impatient. I like to plan, and I like to execute the plan. I’ve never been accused of being a perfectionist…I’m more the “get ‘er done” kind of person. So, the Lord has taken me through decades of refining me, and I am confident He hasn’t finished the job yet.
With that said, I find right now with the Coronavirus, the whole world is waiting. Most of the country is on lockdown or stay-at-home orders. I’m hearing much angst from others about not knowing how to proceed in life.
When will the lockdown be over?
When can I travel again?
How can I finish the semester?
How long will it take for a cure or vaccine to be found?
We don’t like not having answers. Not having answers requires waiting…or maybe even dangling.
Here are a few lessons the Lord has taught me on waiting well–and is teaching me–that I am currently attempting to practice.
Doing what God has called me to do today
It’s true that I don’t feel as much pressure or have as many urgent items to accomplish. There is even a slower rhythm to my day. But it doesn’t mean I have nothing to do. If every single to-do item was accomplished, I could always find someone to encourage, journal my experiences, pray, practice a skill, phone an old friend, take my exercise routine to a new level, clean out the pantry (now be honest, you haven’t gotten to that one yet), or any of a dozen other self-improvement opportunities. My day isn’t purposeless just because I haven’t found its purpose yet. While I wait, I am learning to fully live in today with joy.
Find what God has for me during the waiting
I used to think that God found pleasure in making me wait. Like backing away from a horse when I’ve got a carrot in my hand, I thought God might be laughing at my irritation. But I don’t believe God is like that anymore. Now more than ever, I believe God has a gift to give me as I wait that I wouldn’t be able to receive if the waiting ended. In waiting, I’ve experienced personal growth, surprise visits, money, re-direction, rest, new ideas, restored relationships, new skills, renewed strength, vision, perspective, etc. All of which would not have happened had I received the answers in my time frame instead of His. Now, while I wait, I begin to look for the treasure He has for me.
Gratitude is essential for waiting successfully. There is always something to be grateful for. I don’t think we have to give thanks for the sickness, or the pain, or the trial itself. But we give thanks during the hardship. Today, as I wait, I am thankful for speedy news updates, social media connection with friends, civil accord for the most part, time to write, time to research, etc.
There is an overwhelming peace I am experiencing as I accept this pause in my life. When I keep these things in mind, I am actually becoming excited knowing God has a great movement ahead for my life, and He is preparing me for it.
What have you found that helps you to wait well?