“To everything there is a season- and a time to every purpose under the heaven” (Ecc 3:1). And as a Type A person, one of my favorite seasons is the season of harvest. I love seeing when all the work comes to fruition. In contrast, one of my least favorite seasons is a season of waiting.
And, oddly enough, every time I think of this waiting season, I think of the wise words of Dr. Seuss in Oh The Places You will Go. In his explanation of the different stages of life, he says:
“You can get so confused
that you’ll start in to race
down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace
and grind on for miles cross weirdish wild space,
headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.
The Waiting Place…
…for people just waiting.”
And sometimes I feel like waiting IS the most useless place- But maybe it’s not. With each year that passes the world grows smaller and my perspective grows larger. What I mean by that is that mankind is SO interwoven and connected and there is truly NOTHING that is singular beneficial or consequential. Every act I take and every word I say impacts the people around me in some way, whether I like it or not.
My wife is a water polo coach and one of the things she tries to build into her players is the idea that your actions ALWAYS impact the team. If people come back out of shape, the team is not able to move forward in skill progression until fitness is attained. The delay there pushes all other activities back and impacts their ability ultimately to win games. Those who are physically fit have to wait on those who are not physically where they need to be before we can move on as a team.
But you may not be waiting on a team member. You may be waiting for a spouse- and you very well might be waiting on them! You have prayed for years for a Godly man or woman and God has the person, but he or she is taking a little more time than you might want getting to where you need them to be. Maybe you are waiting on a job, a house, a break, a healing, a person, or a prayer to be answered. And sometimes our waiting is due to the decisions of others. And waiting is hard, but I do believe that God always makes use of every season, so I want to encourage you if you are in a season of waiting ask these questions:
- What can I learn while I am still?
- The Lord speaks in a still small voice, so often we have to stop moving to hear his true prompting
- How can I pray for others/ situations around my waiting?
- Stop thinking the situation is all about you- look to see how others might be impacted by you rushing the situation
- What can you do to add value to others and your current situation?
- It is REALLY easy to just hope for the future and endure the present by thinking “I’ll be out of here soon, so what does it matter anyway?” And the truth is it DOES matter- every word we speak and action we take matters.
So today, as I am waiting on the city of Pasadena for some specific permissions, I want to encourage you to take heart, look outside the box, pray, and add value where you are.