A couple weeks ago I was prompted in a bible study to consider how God was trying to get my attention, What is a common topic that keeps coming up in your life? was basically the question. The first time I went through the questions, nothing really struck me on this one. I don't operate under the impression that God is never not working something out in me. (Though I do think my level of obedience and openness to the work of the Holy Spirit can really determine what I'm able to notice about myself... I digress.)
It wasn't until I sat in a circle of fellow leaders reviewing the week's questions was I able to connect the dots of my life at the time: wait on Me. It was a quiet little whisper in the back corners of my mind. One, if I'm honest, I almost dismissed because it sounded like a cliche little Christianese phrase people pass off when they don't get what they want. But then it felt like a little weight was relieved off my shoulders the more I chewed on the idea.
I was (and am) waiting to see what God does in a couple areas of my life.
And to be honest, I'm kinda trash at waiting.
This comes to no surprise, though. I would argue many of us are not good at being patient. We can blame it on culture and Amazon Prime and drive-thru and the other impatient drivers on the road. We are hustling from one thing to the next. And I've transferred this pace to the seasons of my life. Maybe you have too.
There has been plenty of disappointment over the years when it comes to dating. I've spoken on this before, nor is this a shock either. Dating in 2022 is a dumpster fire. Those of who snagged a spouse pre-dating apps, consider yourself extra blessed. Navigating those on top of regular social interactions (or lack thereof post-pandemic LOL) is exactly what you can imagine: a dumpster fire. I will admit I've met some lovely men though... but alas, there is no ring on my finger.
I also feel a bit of a gap when it comes to my career. I love teaching... Well, I love the relationships I've built in teaching. And I love studying writing and showing people how to communicate clearly. But I find myself in a bit of slump, I guess you could say. I miss the challenge of learning and being stretched. To be clear, I could be stretching myself more at my current teaching job. I could add things to my lessons and such. I know this. But there's just no oomph there to do it. Maybe I'm being lazy about it? I could admit that if it was true... But that's not quite it. I've wondered if maybe I move up to higher ed? Teaching writing to an older population? But then I think What if I'm to do something totally different with writing? What if I'm to change careers altogether? I sent some job apps out over the summer to really see and I got LITERALLY ZERO bites.
So then I'm like, Lord... what are we doing?
Okay so are we waiting on an answer? Are we waiting on someone to bring me a new job? Are we waiting until I get out of this little teaching funk and stay there? Are we waiting for Jesus to return and then I don't have to even worry about getting married? It's all unclear.
But for now, I do know to just wait and see. To be clear again, I am not a waiter. I am a fixer and a let's-just-get-this-done-er. I am trying to practice something that goes against almost every pattern of behavior I've had since I was old enough to write my name.
What does this look like tangibly and practically? I talk to Jesus a lot. In spurts and questions and internal eye rolls. I laugh at myself a lot too because I can feel myself scrambling to make some dramatic change in my life to get rid of whatever tension I'm feeling. It really is laughable how bad I am. I can have patience in the grocery line. I can have patience with my students and typically my dog.
But patience for things I want the most in my life? SOS help me, Jesus.
If you somehow end up reading this and are in a waiting pattern that you'd rather not be in, know you're not alone and that there isn't an easy way to do it. There isn't a quick prayer that makes you more patient or a behavior that will get you what you want.
What I have seen though, is the process of waiting has really shown me what I'm made of: some pride, impatience, self-sufficiency, and fear. Lots of fear that shows itself when I believe the lie that I may not have a good life because it doesn't look the way I expected it would today.
Without this forced season of waiting I would not know Jesus and the Holy Spirit and Our Father the way I do. I wouldn't know that Jesus is patient with my impatience. I wouldn't know the Holy Spirit is literally counseling all day long if I would just shut my mouth and listen for a second. And maybe most importantly, I wouldn't know (and believe) that the Father does not withhold good things from me.
Woe to me, how quickly do I wander...