Welcome Everyone’s waiting for something. Some are waiting for major life answers. Some may be waiting form things that are private and personal. Others wait for an answer or experience that may seem small and insignificant to some, but is deep and passionate to the individual. Without a doubt, there’s a life experience we can guarantee everyone will go through, at least some of the time, and that is, hurry up and wait!
Waiting is hard, and while we can still find enjoyment in the journey, patience can be difficult during these waiting periods. I have a friend, that after waiting many years, at the age of 40, has finally conceived a child. I know she’s waited a long time for this joy. I have another friend that is well into her forties, and she is waiting, still, for God to bring her a husband. I have another friend who waits for answers to heal her body and restore her chronic health problems. I know some people that are just waiting for that next paycheck, hoping to squeeze a little bit more from their budget to cover expenses. Some are waiting to reconcile differences with family members and some are waiting to reunite with deployed soldiers. Are you feeling the pull of waiting?
Food For Thought My current stage of waiting may not be as monumental as the experiences I just listed, but I can empathize. I’ve been there, waiting for Mr. Right, waiting for the job offer, waiting for the check to clear, waiting for the pregnancy that doesn’t happen, waiting for the test results. But praise God, I have reached a place in my life where I’m waiting on things that are smaller, simpler, and more personal. Right now, I’m just waiting for my body to catch up with my soul.
I physically reside in a Kansas City suburb, but my soul is about 770 miles southeast of here. Anyone who knows me, even a little bit, knows that I have a deep, longing desire to relocate, with my family, to eastern Tennessee. As the ever-quotable John Muir said, “The mountains are calling and I must go…” Yes, indeed, they are calling and it’s getting louder and louder with each passing day.
I am actually in the middle of writing a piece (separate from the blog) about why this longing to move is so strong. I don’t know all the how’s and why’s, but I really believe I must have been born with a southern soul. Yes, I love mountains and nature and hiking and waterfalls. But I’ve been to Colorado, Arkansas, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, and so many more amazing places in this country. I’ve hiked mountains in other places and, while very beautiful, none of them have ever felt like home. But being in Tennessee (okay, I’ll concede to western North Carolina, as well) feels like home. There’s a connection there with my soul.
My husband and I loved it when we honeymooned there in 2004, but loved it even more in 2014. By the time we took our fourth trip to Tennessee and North Carolina in 2017, I was convinced that I needed to move there. The list of reasons is long and personal. It’s funny how I spent my youth wanting to get away from “country living” and my dream was to be a “regular” suburban mom. Sometimes losing one of the biggest pieces of your identity, though, helps one find their true self. It turns out half-million dollar homes and weekend soccer tournaments are not really our thing. It turns out that careers are not the most important thing. It turns out I’m someone other than a kindergarten teacher and PTA volunteer. It turns out my real identify is nestled somewhere between Knoxville and the Blue Ridge Mountains, listening to bluegrass music and wearing Volunteer Orange.
It’s not easy being somewhere else, physically, while my soul lingers in the Appalachian hills, humming Rocky Top and breathing in fresh mountain air. I think the hardest part of these waiting periods is wanting something so badly, but not being able to turn it into a reality. I know, it’s an earthly goal. It’s a secular desire. It’s self-seeking. But it’s frighteningly intense. In fact, I always wonder how something so simple can be so consuming.
As it turns out, though, I’ve been working on my faith this year (remember my “word of the year”?), and my faith says I’m here for a reason. There is a purpose in the delay. There must be a reason, because I certainly have been praying without ceasing! God has a purpose for me right here, right now. It may have to do with our church, my family, my daughter’s education, or simply, financial obligation. Maybe I’m on the back end of finishing up something that brought me here or maybe I’m waiting for God to clear the path ahead of us. Maybe I’m being given lessons in perseverance and patience. Maybe the answer is not yet, not now. But I do believe that God is working out the details for the day when my body finally gets to catch up with my soul and my husband and I make that move we’ve been dreaming about for so many years.
Today’s Scriptures It is not easy to be patient when you are waiting to experience the biggest of life’s events: marriage, babies, good health, and healed relationships. It is often quite frustrating in these circumstances to have others point out God’s hand in your season of waiting. It is easy to become frustrated and not want to hear about all the reasons why God may be making us wait. The strongest, most patient Christians will still get frustrated, upset, and emotional while waiting without knowing the answers to why and how much longer. This is because we are human and we view our world through our limited human eyes. We don’t always see the big picture. But that’s exactly when our faith grows, when we are without sight. If we nurture it and allow it, our faith will be our anchor.
Today’s scriptures are taken from the New International Version of the Holy Bible.
Psalm 27:14 Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.
Psalm 33:20 We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield.
Psalm 37:3-4 Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Lamentations 3:25-26 The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.
Matthew 17:20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Luke 17:6 He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.