Happy Change Those two words do not look like they belong together. In most people’s…
Being a busy, working mom, the world of immediacy is so convenient. On an afternoon of basketball practices, cub scouts meetings, and band practices, followed with homework and housework, take-out is a blessing. When our calendar if full of football games, church functions, birthday parties, and family events hogging the weekends, grocery click lists have become a life saver. Did I mention how Amazon Prime has become my go to for Christmas and Birthday gifts? If my kids have a homework question that I cannot answer, the internet can sometimes help us out. DVR lets me fast forward commercials. Netflix makes it to where I no longer have to wait a week on the next episode. Convenience.
We live in a world where we are able to get what we want almost immediately. If we have to wait too long in traffic, some of us, (me) might experience road rage. If we have to wait too long for our food in the drive through lane, we may become frustrated. We may even find ourselves deciding we don’t even need that package if we have to wait 5-7 business days for delivery. We want what we want NOW.
Younger childhood has always been known as the “impatient” time of one’s life. As infants, we would let out a small cry just to be pampered by our parents. As toddlers, we started to learn that our wants might have to wait a little longer. In childhood, we try our parents to get our way by throwing little temper tantrums. While teenagers have learned through the years that waiting for wants is inevitable, they can still find ways to talk their parents into making that wait time suddenly quicken.
So one might think that by the time we are adults, we would have learned that we must wait. Have we?
How has this immediate satisfaction world affected our Christian lives? One of the biggest problems I face in this fast pace world is expecting immediate answered prayers.
There have been times in my life that I have prayed, and God has revealed his answer immediately. Those times were amazing, and with no doubt, made my faith stronger. There have also been a lot more prayers prayed that did not receive immediate answers. Some prayers have been answered within a few days, or months, but there are some that have taken years, or that are still in process. While all answered prayers increase our faith, those times of waiting, may make us question our faith.
While as Christians, we know that all things come in God’s timing, that doesn’t make us any more patient. If anything, it may make us more impatient. Especially in a world of immediate answers. Have you ever taken a problem upon yourself due to being too impatient to wait on God’s answer?
In those times that I am too impatient to wait on God, and try to fix the problem myself, I usually make a mess of things. Does this sound familiar? All too many times in life, we fail to just wait. To just be still. Not too long ago I found myself in a season of God telling me to “Just. Be. Still”. That has been one of the hardest lessons to learn. During a time of my life that I begged God for answers, to heal my brokenness, to give me peace, He told me to wait.
Waiting is never easy. Satan can sneak in during the waiting period and plant seeds of doubt. Many times, he has led me to believe that my problem is not important to God. He has led me to think that God doesn’t have time for me, or isn’t listening. At times, I have even thought that maybe God stopped caring for me. Thankfully, God shows up right on time. He takes away those worries, and doubts. He gives peace. He blesses us with so much more than we will ever deserve. We just have to wait. So how do we make it through the waiting season?
Start with trust. Put your faith in Him, and know that He will answer that prayer, no matter how long it may take. Trust that he has your best interest at heart. My favorite verse comes to mind here, Jeremiah 29:11. Know that he has plans for you to have hope.
Pray. Yes, I know we have already prayed, hence the waiting on an answer to the prayer, but does that mean we should stop asking God to answer it? I have a family member that was not on the path he knew he should have been. For years upon years, our family prayed repeatedly for him. People in our churches that didn’t know him, prayed for “Bubba”. In God’s time, those prayers were answered and “Bubba” has been on fire for God ever since!
Find a song that speaks to you for encouragement. I highly suggest “Thy Will” by Hilary Scott. I had that song on repeat for the majority of my “still” season. There are so many great Christian artist that have songs with wonderful messages to help you through this life.
Read your bible. The bible is full of verses to help you through those hard times of having to wait. During my season of waiting, I come to love Psalms. There are so many poems that I can relate to in my time of struggle and my time of triumph. Ask God to show you scripture that can help. Reach out to your Christian friends for scripture that has helped them. Scripture is one of the best ways to keep us close to God and far away from Satan. If we can fill our minds with His truth, there is not much room left for doubt.
I could give you so many examples of having to wait for an answered prayer. There is one that sticks out to me as I write. I mentioned that I went through a season of waiting. This particular season lasted almost ten months. God had led my husband and me to leave our home church. This church was home. I had spent the majority of my entire life at this church. We were married there. My husband and two of our children were saved there. It was a very hard, emotional time for me. I knew that I had to trust that God would send us to our new church. I just expected it to happen rather quickly. Our children needed to be active in a youth program. I needed a church family. My husband needed a place to grow his ministry. Each of us in my family of 5 had “specifics” that we hoped were in a church. Our oldest wanted a church with an opportunity to play music, and teens he knew. Our daughter wanted kids her own age. Our youngest wanted a church with a pirate ship (gotta love little boys). My husband and I wanted a church where we could continue working with youth and continue our music ministry.
During those ten months, we visited many churches. We met wonderful Christians and fellowshipped with great people. A few churches had kids our childrens age. A few had room for work with youth. One church even had a pirate ship, but none of those churches were where He wanted us to be. At times, I was discouraged. In that discouragement, I heard him whisper “Just Be Still”. He knew how hard it would be for me to do just that. I’m a fixer. I wanted our family to be in our new home church so badly, but he wanted me to be still. Reluctantly, I did just that. I trusted, prayed, had others pray, read my bible, and waited. I am so glad that I did.
One year ago, at the end of this month, he led us to our new home church. We have been so blessed by that church. My husband is the Youth Pastor. We are able to continue with our music ministry to worship. Our oldest is a party of our worship team playing his music. The youth group has a group of kids our daughter’s age that she has been able to connect with. And yes, it even has a pirate ship/boat for our youngest son. I have been so blessed in so many ways by that church. As we come up on our anniversary of coming to this church, I am so glad I waited. I am so glad that God led us where he wanted us in HIS time.
So don’t give up. Keep waiting and practice your patience. He will answer those prayers. He will give you that peace.