Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Waiting Game

I hate waiting.

If you know me, you probably know this fact about me.  I don't like the feeling that precious minutes are passing by, and we are just stuck until something comes.  I don't like factors outside my little realm of control dictating how I spend my time.  But more than the waiting, I hate the letdown of waiting for something that doesn't work out.  All the energy that went into that week or month or year seems to collapse right on top of me.  

I feel like that has been my life the last few years.  I've shared that we have been wanting a baby for some time, so you could probably guess that my life is lived in months.  A new month comes, a new opportunity, a new waiting game, and, as it has proven so far at least, a new disappointment.  

This whole routine gets me very restless and anxious.  I try to keep busy because that at least gives myself the impression that life is fine, but the truth is, distractions don't last very long.  At the end of the day, I still have to deal with the fact that things are absolutely out of my control.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised that Scripture tells us to "wait on the Lord."  Waiting goes against our human desire to control things.  When we are forced to wait on someone, we are no longer in charge; we are at the mercy of someone else.  Thankfully, we are able to wait on the Lord knowing He is good and kind and merciful.  There is hope involved in our waiting because we have a gracious and loving Father, and we know He will respond.  Nevertheless, it is still hard, which is probably why it is so good for us.  Waiting is what the Great Physician often prescribes to build our character and grow our faithfulness--but this medicine is hard for me to swallow!

As I was looking up Scriptures about waiting, I came across this little study.  It's quite lengthy, but I wanted to share some of the points.  You can read the whole text here if you'd like.  No doubt, I am not the only one playing the waiting game these days.

Waiting on the Lord
Study by J. Hampton Keathley, III

What is involved in waiting on the Lord?
1.  Waiting means confident expectation, so waiting and hoping go together.
2.  Waiting involves an expectation based on knowledge and trust - our ability to wait on God is connected to our confidence in who God is and what God has done!
3.  Waiting involves seeking the Lord, spending time in His Word, in prayer, and in meditation.
4.  Waiting involves resting in God's timing, acting when He is calling us to act and resting when He is calling us to rest.

Why should we wait on the Lord?
1.  Because of who God is and what He is able to do - again, we need knowledge of God through experience and Scripture
2.  Because of who we are and what we are not able to do - we need to have a right view of ourselves and our weakness

What benefits are there to waiting?
1.  Waiting strengthens and enables us.
2.  Waiting strengthens and builds character.
3.  Waiting lifts us out of despair and causes praise to God.
4.  Waiting encourages others and gives greater ability to witness.

I am looking forward to printing out the study and spending some time with it, but the truth is I always know that when I feel restless and anxious, God is calling me to Him.  No distraction on this earth can fix my heart when it's broken.  Only God can lessen my disappointment and ease my pain.  Only He can give me the strength to wait -- to wait with expectancy and hope and love.  Strangely enough, it brings me comfort to know that God wants us to wait.  It brings purpose to this trial in my life, when I am tempted to think it is all for nothing.  There is no trial, no struggle, no pain that God cannot and will not use for His glory.  Praise Him!

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord; O Lord, hear my voice.  Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.  I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word, I put my hope.  My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning.  
Psalm 130:1-2, 4-6

4 comments:

  1. Waiting stinks...but I suppose it is better than being stuck in sin as waiting does seem to produce refinement and great trust in the Lord. Good post, Can.

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  2. Remembering my (as I called it) sitting in the waiting room.......again! Oh my goodness~~~~I had years of that room. At the time of my life I was "Waiting," I was listening to a series of tapes by Joyce Laders. To this day, I still remember her encouraging words of wisdom~~~It was as though she was waiting and walking with me. She got me through many many hospital stays, a hurting marriage, broken relationships and just plain old dissapointments! My thoughts and prayers are with you so often during my day! Thanks for sharing your heart~~I KNOW it is not an easy post to share~~~ =|

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  3. Sweet Candace... thanks for sharing about your waiting game. While I can never really know what you're going through, as a four year veteran of that monthly waiting game, I do empathize a bit. I love our attitude- waiting on the Lord is worth every moment, whether painful or joyful, but it sure isn't easy. :o)

    I will definitely look up that study. Looking back on how much we've grown the past 4 years, I'm so deeply grateful that the Lord gave us some more time to grow in faithfulness, temperance, and (hopefully, at least a little!) grace. And, as my mom pointed out, not a moment of parenthood will be wasted on us or taken for granted-- for we will be so deeply grateful to be in the trenches, despite the incredible stresses and trials of parenting.

    Hope you find an extra measure of God's peace this month...

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  4. Candace! Thank you for sharing your heart..... I agree with Kelly waiting does suck... I have printed out the study and look forward to studying it. Thank you for sharing and touching our lives! Huggs

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