Actively Waiting

It has been quite a year. Filled with new life, new hopes, new dreams, and some bumps along the way. I find myself back in a waiting period. And that is OK. I have found that these waiting periods are God’s most active times. Isn’t that ironic? We feel so still, so quiet. Yet, God is doing His thing and is moving and placing and planning. These are truths that I am constantly reminding myself of right now.

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And as I wait, maybe you are too? Maybe waiting for a job, a child, a spouse, or a dream that has become a fervent prayer?

May I encourage you with some things that God continues to impress on me and teach me on a daily basis?

  1. God is not a waster of time. Wasting anything is not of God. He is a redeemer of time! Even though it feels like things aren’t moving as quickly as I would like, God is actively working. When I think of waiting, I am reminded of the 4 seasons – each one vital to the earth being able to produce to its’ absolute highest quality. And so it is with waiting. It is vital for me as it requires me to rely solely on the Lord. Yes, I could take matters into my own hands and try to “speed things up”…but… I am well aware of how that will turn out. I am risking missing out on God’s blessing on my life.
  2. God encourages our honesty. There have been times I have wanted to just run – like, book it. I love the freedom that God gives us to feel this; to be honest with him, to express openly our frustrations, doubts, concerns. And then..He stops me. Dead in my tracks. Like any loving Father does, He gently pulls me back in and presses me into Him. The closer I get to Him, the more I just want to stay. He is my security and I am reassured by His embrace that He is guiding me and protecting me.
  3. The Lord’s mercies are truly new each day. How comforting that God’s grace never runs dry! It is endless and always abounding. I don’t know about you, but I am in desperate need of grace. It pieces the cracks of my heart back together when everything seems on the verge of breaking. He is such a kind and faithful God.

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So as I sit here with my coffee and prayer journal typing out all these random thoughts, I pray it touches your heart if you are active in your own waiting. These are precious times. Cherish them. Glean from them. Watch God do what He does best – guiding us to a deeper relationship with Him.

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Seasons

You are on my heart and I have been praying for you. Over the last few weeks, I have felt God impressing on my heart to leave a message here for those who are hurting, going through a waiting period, or are in need of healing. I finally have a free moment to sit down and write this.
Whether you are waiting for a job, a spouse, a test result from a doctor, or any other answer God is real and is heartbroken over your pain. Psalms states that he collects our tears in a bottle. (Psalms 56:8)  I have walked through the valley of marriage, the valley of vocation, and the valley of desiring a family. There have been many times that I have questioned if the Lord could really hear my cries out to Him or if He could really see me in the valley. At the end of the day, I had to make a choice. I had to choose to really believe in who He says He is or I had to choose to walk on my own.
Last summer, I was going through an emotional winter. And just like physical New England winters, I felt like my winter was never going to end. And through my hurt and pain, I had to make the choice of believing in God’s promises or not. I chose to believe. That was a battle in and of itself. But God promises us that His Word is our weapon and it is active.(Hebrews 4:12) I found verses to pray through several times a day for several months. And ever so slowly, there was break through. The pain or the struggle didn’t immediately go away, but God’s peace started to flood through the cracks and it soon overshadowed my difficulties. These valleys made God’s promises real to me. It is one thing to say I believed in Him. It’s another to cling to it and place all my trust in Him because He was all I had at that time.
I believe He can do the same for you. I am overwhelmed by your suffering. Some I know of specifically, some I don’t. But the burden I have for you is real and I am praying.

How can you get through your valley?

* Claim God’s promises. If you haven’t already, get out your Bible and find a verse that speaks to you about your situation. Memorize it. Pray it. It may take some time for the pain to subside and the peace to come in, but I promise you, it will. If you don’t have a Bible, I would love to buy you one. Please let me know!

* Praise God. Yes, you read that right. We are to praise God. I personally don’t think we have to praise Him FOR the valley while we are in it, but praise Him DESPITE it. By giving thanks to HIm, we are turning our eyes to Him only and taking our focus off of the trial. Philippians 4:6-7 states:” 6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. (NLT) This will be hard. I know. I read in one of the Psalms about David offeirng a “sacrifice of praise”. I now understand that phrase. Praise IS a sacrifice..but it is something God will honor.

* Journal. By recording what God is doing for you and through you during hard times will serve as a reminder of His faithfulness in the future. In the Old Testament, God’s leaders would set up stone altars as a reminder of how God was faithful to them. These were markers of His answers. I have found this to be true of my prayer journals or notes I have written in my Bible. They have served as constant reminders of God’s faithfulness in the past.

I continue to pray for you. I pray that God’s faithfulness and peace will eventually be able to supercede your pain. He is the only constant in this world.