Joy In The Wait

18

August 28, 2012 by agirlikemee

On Saturday, Simon and I drove three hours to see Jeff play a show at a nearby amusement/water park. It was a chance to have a fun family day and be together someplace new. There was a kiddie train off in one area of the park that we knew Simon would love. We set off in the direction of the train, all the while hearing Simon mutter “Chu-choo” over and over again. When we finally arrived, we were met with a line of people waiting to go. We told Simon he had to wait for the choo-choo to come, so he must be patient. Tears filled up in his little eyes as the thought of waiting for the train set in. Moments passed and the train finally pulled up into the station. Excitement and joy flooded his face as the line began to move and the hopes of boarding the train were coming to light. Just as we were approaching the gate, the conductor told us to stop and said that we would have to wait for the next ride. Panic ensued as my young son saw his beloved “chu-choo” ride off into the distance, leaving him behind. We again reminded him that he had to wait, and that it would be worth it when our turn finally came. Eventually, the train did return, and with a grin that would melt your heart, Simon got to ride his choo-choo. It wasn’t until later that evening when reflecting on the day, that I began to see myself in the situation of Simon and the train.

You don’t have to look very far to see that we live in a culture that is all about instant gratification. With a click of a button or a swipe of your finger you can watch a movie, buy a ticket to travel around the world, order food, get that new dress you’re dying to have, and see if that cute boy you like has finally dumped his girlfriend. Our culture has taught us that if we want it, we can have it and have it now. So it makes complete sense that when we come to God with our needs and wants, we desire that same form of instant gratification. And when God chooses to make us wait…well… all hell can break loose.

It took Jeff and I nine months of trying for a baby before I got pregnant with Simon. In those nine months seven of my friends all got pregnant. You heard me….SEVEN. With each baby announcement from friends and each failed pregnancy test from me, my heart became more angry and bitter towards God. Like Simon, I felt like I was waiting in line to ride the train only to be told by God that it still wasn’t my turn. There would be nights that I would sit on my bed crying out to Jesus, begging him to just let me have a baby. When he didn’t come through….I began to feel like he had simply just forgotten about me. I couldn’t understand why he wouldn’t grant me such a deep desire of my heart, especially when I knew he was the one who put it there in the first place.

I know that there are some of you who feel like God has forgotten you. Some of you feel so alone and wonder if you’ll ever find true friendship. I know some of you feel like you may never find that spouse and God has chosen to leave you single forever. Some of you long to find freedom from a stronghold, and can’t understand why God won’t simply just set you free. You have cried out to God in your pain and sorrow, only to feel like you have been met with complete silence. It’s like the story of Daniel. Daniel had been fasting and praying and asking God to help save his people. Three weeks passed and there was nothing. No word or sign that God had heard Daniels prayer. He was beginning to grow tired and week, and almost at the end of his rope. It was at the end of those three weeks that an angel came to Daniel and told him that he was sent by the Lord to fulfill Daniels prayer. In verse 12 of chapter 10 the angel says, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.” And then in verse 13 he continues with a “ But….” You see, God had not forgotten Daniels prayer nor did he not desire to answer it. God had to work out some of the “buts” before Daniels prayer could be answered.

As hard as it is to accept, the Lord does not work on our time table. He is outside of time and space, weaving together our story from start to finish. He has no need to rush because he knows how it will all work out in the end. But because we cannot see nor understand his total sovereignty, we have to have faith that he knows what he is doing. Look at Isaiah 49:14-16a “But Zion said,“The Lord has forsaken me, and my Lord has forgotten me.” “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, Yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands.””  Beloved girl, if we are in Christ, we are not forgotten, we are embedded into our heavenly father’s heart and etched upon his hands. And because we are so precious to him, he wants to make sure that we don’t just have what’s best right now, he wants us to have HIS best. Author John Ortberg puts it like this: “Biblically, waiting is not just something we have to do until we get what we want. Waiting is part of the process of becoming what God wants us to be.” 

Had I gotten pregnant even one month sooner than I did, I wouldn’t have had Simon. I wouldn’t have been able to see my anger for God was keeping me from being friends with Kelly. I wouldn’t have been able to spend those extra special months embracing the life Jeff and I had together as just the two of us. And I wouldn’t have been able to draw near to the Lord and allow him to mend my heart in the best of ways, making me a better woman and mother. It was in the moments of wait that God came close. And it was in those moments that I could begin to see the aching of HIS heart more clearly.

Precious friend, there is joy to be found in your season of wait. Know that God does hear you. He is diligently knitting together the fabric of your story, making it perfect. He has not forgotten you, he is just beckoning you to come close so that he may show you all that he would have for you. Put your hope in his love and sovereignty, and when you do, you will find true joy in the wait.

18 thoughts on “Joy In The Wait

  1. Winter says:

    This is a beautiful post Heather! We saw you at the amusement park with Simon, but didn’t want to bother you. He’s such a beautiful baby boy! I agree with the instant gratification society….it’s really sad when you compare it to how things were years ago. I’m not saying I don’t like having what I want, when I want it..because I do…but things were so much more simple in the old days. I love to hear stories from back then. Families were so much more stronger back then too, because they knew the power of patience. I wish I had more of that!

  2. Marina Dias says:

    That’s really amazing. I was struggling with the “wait” subject this week and God spoke to me about it in a lot of different ways, and this post was definitely one of His answers to my heart.

  3. Sharon Stockton says:

    I was 33 before I got married and 35 when our first child was born (a daughter)–a lot of years of waiting, hoping, praying, crying, and being almost ready to give up. Two years later I gave birth to a son. Now, many years later, I am a grandmother to the most beautiful baby boy. God is good, but it’s hard to remember that His ways are not our ways!

  4. Heather

    Thanks for he words of hope and I wish they gave me more peace. Its not what you wrote it is the silience that I feel is there and that is eating away at both my heart and my faith these days. I have been waiting so long for a husband with out even a glimps of one that I have grown bitter and angry with everthing that has to do with that kind of relationship. Like you with your friends I have watched most of mine get married and now have three friends that are asking me to help plan their weddings with them. Instead of giving me a single sign of this maybe happening in there have been more stumbling blocks put in my way. I have felt so alone for so long that the pain from it is becoming my norm and that is just sad in its self. All I ever hear is your not really alone and that you know God is aloways there. I am to the point now that I want to just slug every person who says that. I am fully aware that my heavenly Father is there but it does not replace that pain of not having someone in my life to share the moments of joy, sadness, worry , and love with that is human. My Pastor often tells me that our wants are not always the same as God’s and that I have to remember that, which is so much help in so not so many ways. He also tells me that he has never meet a person that loves so openly and passionately that he is not sure that if I do have a husband that it might take away from the love that I share with everyone around me including those I have never meet. I personally think he is just afraid that I will not do as much volunteer work as I do now to keep myself busy anymore. I just feel so lost, but your words do help some.

  5. Amy says:

    Sara~ I feel your pain….I really do. I’m 37 and am still waiting for God to provide a husband. I’ve been praying for one since I was 16. I have also had 3 weddings this year alone, after I survived the first round in my 20’s. Right now I am weary & sad. It can be hard to continue in faith b/c of that. What has been keeping me going is that this has caused me to turn towards God and not away from him. It’s not always pretty, and I don’t mince words but He is the One I go to. Also, that God has me & I don’t have to earn my salvation, so I can rest in that, even when I feel angry at him. I have found peace in that. One day at a time. Life is short and eternity is long. Also, people love to give “encouragement” to singles who have not experienced it themselves. Find the bit of truth in it (God’s ways are not our ways), and ditch the rest. They don’t know what to say or do. Focus on the postive. That’s why I like this blog b/c it gets my focus off myself and on to Christ.

  6. Catherine says:

    You really struck at the core of me. Thank you, you have been quite the encouragement. I am 27 years old and single with a desire for a family. There have been strong moments of fully accepting my singleness…and then there have been weak moments…then there have been avoidance (don’t want to think about it). In all those times I remained single. Sometimes I think God is not working fast enough…but then I’m reminded about how His perfect timing has worked in other areas of my life. Still, I must be patient…I want His plan, not mine.

    Thanks for the encouragement.

  7. Tammy says:

    My kids are the “want it now” type. I am sure I am not alone in that. But I ask them– If the house was on fire, would that one thing be the first thing that you grab? They always say– well no– and then I tell them that it really isn’t that important, and it can wait. I tell them they can ask God for anything but don’t lose sight of all that He has provided you with. Thanks again Heather for another great posting. It is really uplifting!!!!

  8. Emily says:

    Thank you so much for posting about waiting and patience. For the past several years I’ve felt like that has been God’s whisper to my heart: to continue to wait. God put it my heart several years ago that he wanted me to work with orphans and he has placed a specific country on my heart in which I believe I’ll someday live in. However, right now I’m in college in a town that isn’t my favorite. Several of my friends have been given the opportunity to do the things that I so desperately long and desire to do. But I haven’t been given the opportunity yet. So thank you for the reminder to keep trusting God. How glorious that He isn’t limited by our time. He knows the full story and He knows what He is doing even though I can’t understand it. I’m really glad I don’t have to understand how He works. I just have to keep trusting :)

  9. rainpaint says:

    Thank you. I kinda figured that God would use this blog (again!) to give me just what I needed to hear. I’ve been really frustrated over the past couple of days. It’s my last year of college, and I just want it to be OVER so that I can move on to the next stage of my life. Plus it’s really frustrating because now I have to do homework/study/write papers instead of seeing my boyfriend and I just miss him a lot. I get impatient because I /know/ that he’s “it” but I have to wait until all of this stupid school stuff is over before we can move on to the awesome thing that God has for us. But thanks – this blog post reminded me that God does have a purpose for the “waiting” – making me more into who He wants me to be.

  10. lacleveland says:

    Im glad your wait was so short! For me it’s been years. I truly think God has forgotten my desires. I’ve not only been in and attended my friends weddings I’m now giving baby showers. So wait is what I do……knowing that one day he will he might remember my desires and give them to me!

  11. Amy

    thanks for your words and I am glad that this has brought you closer to God. It did me to for a while, but now with all that has come from this I am just bitter and angry and somedays want nothing to do with God. You are right people that are not in our position should just say nothing as they don’t understand and their words just hurt more then anything. Most of the time their words of encouragement are just empty promises. It was at first just a sense of it wasn’t my time and that I needed to work on my issues from my childhood in order to be ready for a relatinship, but I have done that work and yet nothing. Now I not only don’t have a husband but found out a couple of months ago that even if I find someone it is a very slim chance that I will be able to have children. The only thing I have ever wanted since I was 8 was husband and child to love. I just don’t know anymore. I just found out through a friend yesterday that three of my friends from home are going to have babies. They were just waiting to tell me until I was able to visit, but my friend didn’t want me to walk into that surprise with out some worning. She knows me well and know that I struggle with all of that and that I am not good at hiding my emotions with my facial expressions even when I want to. So I am going home this weekend and will have to put on the mask I always do with all of them and be the overly excited friend for them. It is not that I am not excited for them and I have wished that their lives would be filled with joy always, it just is hard to understand why that can’t be me and I am a very rational person.

    Blessing and I will pray for you Amy ha God grant you a husband to love you for who you are always

  12. lacleveland says:

    Sara I so unders tand. When I have to do things alone I feel bitter. Why don’t I have a husband? What is wrong with me? What have I done so wrong that God is not bringing me a husband. I too have only wanted to be a wife and mother from the time I was playing house as a child. Career days that was what I would write for my career. Of course I went to college and have had to develop a great career because it’s just me. Now I have had a hysterectomy by emergency so that dream is dead. God can’t take my desire to be a wife away!
    I also put on the mask with all the weddings, baby showers like it dosen’t hurt. I am happy for all my friends but it’s like a knife in my heart for what I’m waiting on and what I have not been blessed with!

  13. agirlikemee says:

    To Amy, Catherine, Sara, and Lacleveland:
    My aunt is a sixty year old career missionary and has never been married. She wrote up a little blog post for me several months ago on singleness that I never felt the Lord leading me to use. I post it below for you in hopes that you will find encouragement in it.

    SINGLE FOR A SEASON OR SINGLE FOR A REASON

    I’m sure you have heard this saying before…you’re either single for a season or single for a reason. And perhaps like you, if singleness is something you struggle with, I had always hoped I would be a “season” and not a “reason”. Truthfully, I had always wanted to get married after the age of 25. I wanted to know that I could make it on my own, just in case I ever needed to. I just didn’t think it would never come. :) And deep down inside, I was afraid I was a “reason” and not a “season”. You see, I never dated much. I had the one or two boyfriends in high school and college, but they never seemed to amount to anything. My heart would break, and I would start the “dissection”. What did I do wrong? Was I too clingy? Was I not skinny enough? Did I talk too much, or too loudly? What was it about me that made him want to move on to someone else? What was my “reason” for being single? I guess I thought that if I knew what it was, I could fix it.

    OK…so I know that we’re not supposed to “hate” the Word of God, I mean, come on…it is God speaking to us!!! but I hated the passages that talked about being single as such a wonderful calling from God; a gift even. It was a gift I wanted to either return or exchange. I felt like people, usually married people, were trying to make me feel better about not being married, by saying that what I had was “special”. “Oh (wistfully said) but you have so many more opportunities to serve God because, after all, you don’t have a husband and family to take care of.” This usually being said by a petite, beautiful woman with the seemingly perfect family. I’m assuming some of you have heard or have felt the same thing.

    Well ladies, here’s what I have learned and some tricks of the trade. First, no one has a corner on the market of happiness. Being married doesn’t automatically bring the wonderful life we all dream of. You just have to check the divorce rates to see that. Second, life is meant to be lived in balance. Make sure you surround yourself with all kinds of friends, not just other singles. Third, find something to be passionate about. This will keep you from constantly thinking you are missing out on something. And finally, make sure you understand how much God loves you! He loves you to distraction! One of my favorite verses is Zephaniah 3:17…”The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” I love the picture of God quieting me with His love. And you better believe He can do it so much better than any man ever could. And then to have Him sing over me! Wow, can you imagine? I read John Piper once and he made the comment that with the spoken word, God created the world. So can you imagine what it would be like to hear Him singing?! And He does, just because He loves us so much.

    So here’s the bottom line…are you single for a season or single for a reason? Well, I can’t say for you, but for me, I’m both. I’m single for a season knowing that I am the bride of Christ and will some day live with Him throughout all eternity. And I am single for a reason, that being, that my life is uniquely designed by a creative God who loves me and desires only the best for me. I can contentedly live with that and trust Him for my happiness. Single, married or single again…make sure your significance is tied up in Him and not in your marital status.

    • Catherine says:

      Thank you for your encouraging words. I know much of what you have said, but what I have come across is defending my desire for a family. Apparently,I’m supposed to be living the high life right now before being tied down. I know very well and I firmly believe that life does not end or begin at marriage…it’s just a different direction. I have lived the best I know how before God and everyone else and I’m learning and growing daily. I also know that in years past I couldn’t handle a relationship (kind of a blow to my pride) and I will not step toward a man until God gives me peace. Right now I’m working on extending a hand of friendship…especially to younger guys. I’m not a social person and I’m trying to work on that. :-)

      • lacleveland says:

        Single for a reason does not sit well with me. I hope my season is closing. I know I have complained but I don’t sit and moan and groan about this. I live life fully. I have travelled all over the world and my work is my passion. I can have anything I want but money dosen’t buy this. Please know I do trust God even when I may doubt and get on my pity pot to bring me the man He has for me. Some days are harder than others. If I give up then Ive given up on God and His promises for the desires of my heart. I will hold on to Him and continue to live and love life today!

  14. Holli says:

    Again this blog has spoken to my heart. (Ps sorry that I am commenting on every single post I got behind) Anyway I am so at tht spot in life where I’m starting to wonder if I will spend the rest of my life as a single person. I’m only 24, 25 in march, but I think about how much I deeply desire to bear children and four at that! (Why four? I’m just not sure) I was encouraged to be patient and wait. The man of my dreams is worth the wait and in the meantime I get to focus solely in my Creator who knows me better than any man could. The one who made me how I am. The one loves me in all circumstances.

    • Holli says:

      I just realized that I did talbot mention how I not only desire to bear children but my heart longs for the opportunity to love someone like Christ loves me! Lol, it sounded like I JUST WANT TO BEAR CHILDREN, uff da!

  15. Erin says:

    Heather,
    I love your post! I’m almost seventeen and I am in the middle of struggle of not being content with being single. I know I have several years until I marry but it’s so hard. I’ve had those moments where I would cry in bed crying out to God. I would feel like he didn’t hear me. I know he did but I wouldn’t get any answers. Waiting is always a challenge for me but I’m learning. Thank you again for your post. It’s a great encouragement during my time of waiting. :-)

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