We may not know the duration of our waiting, but we do know that God is at work.
I’ll never forget my senior year of high school. I gained a whole new perspective on waiting.
Let me preface this story with the fact that even on a good day, I don’t think any of my friends would use the word patient to describe me. Waiting is something I’ve always struggled with.
In sixth grade, my grandparents told me about this college nestled in the Santa Monica Mountains right next to the Pacific Ocean called Pepperdine University. I decided at that moment that it was my dream college.
I applied to seven colleges my senior year: three in Arkansas (where I was born and raised), one in Tennessee, one in Texas, one in Oklahoma, and Pepperdine.
My logic for making a college decision was pretty standard. I would simply go where I got the most scholarship money.
As scholarships started rolling in and I started seeing the cost of tuition, it hit me that Pepperdine wasn’t a super realistic option for me. The only logical choice was Arkansas Tech University, so naturally that is where I decided I would go.
I still remember going to Arkansas Tech with my mom that summer to get my student badge, pick my classes, check out my dorm, declare a pre-med major (this is comical in itself – I ended up majoring in Public Relations), and get familiar with the campus.
Pepperdine was still at the back of my mind, but I counted it as something that wasn’t going to happen. I tried my best to cover up my disappointment and move on.
My mom still had faith.
Just to set the stage, it was now eight days before Pepperdine would start their New Student Orientation. I was having just another ordinary summer day, that included babysitting two little girls, when my iPhone 5S started ringing.
My mom was calling.
I picked up the phone and she immediately said with excitement, “You’ll never believe this.”
She proceeded to tell me that she had called Pepperdine’s admission office to withdrawal my application since it wasn’t going to be affordable for our family.
The admission’s counselor responded with crazy news.
She said to my mom, “What if we told you Hope received an additional scholarship that would bridge the gap to cover one hundred percent of her tuition?”
I couldn’t believe it.
While I felt frustrated, disappointed, forgotten, and anxious, God was working in ways I couldn’t see, feel, or understand. God opened a door that only He could open in His perfect timing.
The same is true for you while you are waiting. Our waiting doesn’t have to make since because we know He is working.
As I look back on this crazy story, I’m reminded that:
- Even when you feel stuck and like it is too late in the game for anything to happen, God is working. God working in our everyday lives is not conditional on whether we feel Him or see Him. We must confidently remember that He is always with us.
- It is worth celebrating that His ways don’t follow a step one, two, and three approach. His ways are higher and mightier than anything we could dream or possibly imagine. We would shortchange ourselves if we planned our own lives.
- God uses the unexpected and the unthinkable to change it all. It is in the waiting that He prepares us for what He prepared for us!
How to Travel Through Your Season of Waiting
We can both agree that waiting has purpose and it is preparing us, but how do we take action and cling to God in this season?
I stumbled upon Psalm 13 in the Bible where David, a shepherd boy and the future king of Israel, is writing from a place of being totally drained and asks the inevitable – how long?
The entire Psalm is short, but something I think we can both relate to:
“How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? Consider and answer me, O LORD my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death, lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed over him,” lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken. But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, because he has dealt bountifully with me.” (Psalm 13: 1-6 ESV)
In this moment, David was alone and had nothing. His enemies wanted to kill him and their ETA was getting closer and closer. He decided to cry out to God in desperation.
This Psalm reveals to us that despite David feeling distant from God and forgotten, he was still living on the hope and promise that God gave him earlier. In 2 Samuel 7, God told him that he was the anointed King of Israel.
In his waiting, David takes a three-step approach that we can apply to our lives when we find ourselves in a similar place:
- Step 1: Take a moment to cry out to God and let Him know how you are feeling.
- Step 2: Ask God the burning questions that are weighing on your mind.
- Step 3: Trust that God is for you and that He is still good regardless of your season.
Just as David had hope in the promise of becoming a king someday, we can have hope in the promise that God wants to spend eternity with us.
Our current circumstances and season of waiting doesn’t have to intimidate or defeat us.
David had enemies ready to kill him if they found him and he still trusted what God had in store for him. He was a shepherd boy and perceived as an underdog and God still used him to rein over all of Israel to bring His kingdom glory.
If He can transform David into a King, what can He do through your life?
Friend, let’s add that pep back in your step while you walk through your waiting. Waiting has nothing on the steadfast promises He has given each of us.
You were made for this moment and God is going to use you in ways to glorify His kingdom that you wouldn’t believe even if you were told.
“But as for me, I will look to the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me.” (Micah 7:7 ESV)
Hope Reagan Harris is a wife, dog mom, encourager, iced vanilla latte drinker, and most importantly a Jesus seeker. If you were having a coffee chat with her today, she would want you to leave believing that you are seen, known, and loved more than you could ever imagine by Jesus. Hope is counting down the days until her first book is published with DaySpring on March 1, 2022.
Become virtual friends with Hope today on Instagram @hopereaganharris!