Finding inspiration for everyday life in everyday life

Tag Archives: waiting

bookend

It’s an odd week. That week that’s bookended either side by Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. You lose track of what day it is. Are the shops open today? Normal times? And what about the Postman – does he come this week? And of course the inevitable conversation of what day does rubbish gets collected!

Sometimes it can feel like that with life. That you’re sandwiched between the promise and the provision. That you’re neither here nor there. Not at the mountain top but not in the valley either. Just in between. Or as A.A. Milne wrote in his poem, you are on a stair halfway, neither up or down. It’s the middle places that much of our life is spent. Spent waiting, hoping, standing in faith. We’re waiting for the answer to prayer, the healing, the provision.

But it’s in these times that we need to keep on, press on and hold on. We need to remember that God is faithful and true to His promises.

And if I’m right about what day it is, the rubbish goes out tonight…

“For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us.”         (2 Corinthians 1:20)

 


 

The Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge Depart The Lindo Wing With Their Daughter

A spring day. And on the incongruous steps of a private Hospital, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge introduce their new-born baby – a princess to the world. Yes for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge the wait was over. For the press encamped on the Hospital’s doorstep the waiting was over too. The public – elated. It had been dubbed the “Great Kate Wait“. The baby not being born by her due date was causing much impatience across the British Isles (and the world for that matter).

You have to feel for Kate  – what pressure. And to even have her pregnancy dubbed “Great Kate Wait” – that would frustrate me! Not that she could really do much about it. (Apart from I guess eating curry and going for walks!?) The majority of babies of course do not comply with their “due date” preferring to arrive early or late. And it’s not like the birth was extraordinarily late either! It really just illustrates the expectation, the anticipation and excitement for this royal baby to be born.

It’s the same in life isn’t it. When we long for, hope for something, the waiting can seem endless. Testing too. To keep the hope, the faith for the answered prayer or promise. But then suddenly it seems it’s at hand. Real. Tangible. And the waiting just dissipates as if it never happened.

Holding on for the breakthrough – the healing, the answer to prayer is hard. It’s challenging. It hurts. It is frustrating. But more than we hold on for the breakthrough we need to hold on to God.

“For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.” (Habakkuk 2:3)

You can depend on the promises because you can depend on God who made them. Our hope is not in our prayers but in God who hears them. Our hope is in God. He is true to the promises that He makes. We can trust in Him.

“The LORD is faithful to all His promises and loving toward all He has made.” (Psalm 145:13)


summer fruit

You have to love Summer. Beautiful balmy days, sunshine and beaches, lazy days and time to relax. And then there’s the food – barbeques,  Frappuccino and gelato, not to mention the beautiful summer fruits. Succulent nectarines and apricots, juicy peaches and berries – strawberries, raspberries, boysenberries! And grapes. I can’t forget the grapes. Absolutely love them! At this time of year, the vines are laden with them.

There’s one grapevine in particular that I keep a close eye on. At my parents house my Father has lovingly planted and nurtured one. Gorgeous, mouth-watering, deep velvet coloured grapes.  So over this time of year my visits to my parents tend to increase in frequency as I scout out how the grapes are ripening. And then inevitably I can wait no longer and I succumb and reach for a grape, not yet ripe, but almost….!

I should have learnt my lesson by now. A still partly green grape is sour and hard, and not juicy and definitely not as delicious as the perfectly ready and ripe ones are! Sure enough too in time the grapes ripen perfectly and I get to enjoy them.

Fruit out of season does not taste good! Even if its’ potential is good it is still unpleasant. It’s worth waiting just a little longer for that perfectly ripe fruit. Same with life – whatever you’re waiting for, God’s timing is perfect and worth hanging out for. Whether it’s a spouse, a new job, ministry, a new opportunity, know that God has it all under control!

 “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1)

“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him.” (Psalm 37:7)


flowers4

Today, waiting at an intersection while an endless stream of cars passed by, all eating into precious time for getting to swimming lessons, I caught myself sighing and then definitely frowning. Well actually my boys caught me frowning. I was unashamedly impatient. In that moment, a song then came to mind. A song from my childhood, from Music Machine about yes you guessed it, patience.

So humour me here, imagine a snail, in fact a snail named Herbert singing this chorus…

Have patience, have patience
Don’t be in such a hurry
When you get impatient, you only start to worry
Remember, remember that God is patient, too
And think of all the times when others have to wait for you

It’s bad enough – hard enough sometimes, waiting at intersections, checkout counters, and yes waiting for my coffee, but what about the times when we wait for the fulfilment of a dream – of a promise from God? When the wait becomes a weight, a burden that we are to carry.

Don’t despair – no visible signs of progress does not mean that God is not working behind the scenes. Often we look for the miracle moment, forgetting that the breakthrough is actually just another step of many. Rather like the seasonally dormant egg, where the visible cracking of the egg just happens to be the final step. God is already in motion, preparing for breakthrough.

In this place of waiting, it’s important to keep our hearts open and full of hope. We need to stay in hope and expectation for the fulfilment of God’s promise. For waiting in the Bible is as much about hope as it is about waiting. But we have good reason to be able to stay in hope because He who promises is faithful.

“For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us.” (2 Corinthians 1:20)

And one day after waiting and waiting, suddenly what you’ve been waiting for happens.

I remember my Father used to say at intersections, “in the biggest traffic there is always a gap.” Sometimes we just have to be patient and hang in there a little longer.

 


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Today I walked past a bus stop (to my car, yeah I’m not a public transport girl!) and I noticed the different postures of those waiting for the bus. One was standing to attention, like a soldier, eyes focused down the road to where the bus would come round the corner. Intent on the bus. Another was sitting idly, relaxing, while several more were making use of the time to be on their smart phones.

Waiting – it is very much a part of life. Dr Seuss puts it most elegantly in his book, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go”…

The Waiting Place…
…for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
Or a bus to come, or a plane to go
Or the mail to come, or the rain to go
Or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
Or waiting around for a Yes or No
Or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.

In life we wait – not just for buses, planes and Doctors, but to meet the spouse, to get the promotion or land the perfect job, to have children. There is often a milestone we are waiting for. Some of these milestones come with prayers to God for breakthrough, for answers, for the fulfilment of a promise or dream.

The question is, what do we do in the Waiting place? Are we in standstill not taking in present surroundings, eyes just fixed on that bus (answered prayer / promise) to come? Or are we keeping ourselves occupied, making the most of the time to do other things. Not giving up, still waiting, but being active in the wait.

I waited for my husband. We didn’t meet until I was 30. But those 20s were not wasted years on just waiting for him. I travelled overseas, bought a house, worked in a job I loved, was promoted, head hunted. I enjoyed having a girl flat with pink cushions in the lounge and flower arrangements in the bathroom. My friends and I made the most of social events. More importantly I made the most of the time I had to spend with God.

And then suddenly the man who became my husband appeared. I’m sure those passengers waiting for the bus who were engrossed on their smart phones found that the time sped by and the bus seemed to suddenly appear. It felt that way to me.

Now as life continues beautifully with my husband and family, I look back at the waiting place and feel content and happy. In my home are reminders (souvenirs) that during the waiting time, I didn’t just wait, I lived.

Don’t just wait – live!



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