The truth about waiting on God – In the kingdom of God, there are certain people that he chooses for “the wait.” People like David, Joseph, and Abraham to name just a few. People that God has selected for a great promise. The only thing is, God never really mentions how long it will take for that promise to come about or that it might take a few years…or decades. If you’ve been waiting on a promise from God for a while, you’re one of those people. Welcome to the club!
11 years ago, during a time of fasting and praying, I had a vision in which God showed me that he had a husband for me. I expected a man to pop in my life quickly because, hello – I had a vision! I thought the vision meant that my single season was coming to a close and I needed to hurry up and pick out my wedding photographer. I had no idea that the vision was actually a gracious invitation to join the “waiting on God” club.
That was 11 years ago. Since then, I’ve learned to be content in the wait. Well, actually, on about 95% days of the year, I’m content. On the other 5% a variety of emotions and “choice words” have been known to escape my lips. Yes, I’ve had a few fits, outbursts, tantrums and the like with God. He can handle my anger, but he lets me know that he isn’t altering his plan. For one thing, it is just too excellently planned out. And it’s already been set in motion. Nothing is going to stop his mighty train from coming down the tracks. Yes, it’s traveling at a whopping 3 miles an hour, but it’s in motion.
I trust him. And most days, I have a lot of joy – more than I can contain sometimes. I have an active, purposeful life full of friends and ministry. I’m a firm believer that God is working all things out for my good. I laugh a lot and enjoy my freedom and independence. Singleness is enjoyable. I believe God does extra special things for his single kids. I even wrote a book about dating and waiting on God. So, that makes me the president of his fan club for singles!
But I’m afraid that because of all that, some might look at my life and think I wake up every morning, put on my “single and loving it” tee-shirt, and skip out the door to take in another day of effortless, joy. And that isn’t the truth. To try to portray that only makes those who are struggling wonder why God isn’t doing the same for them.
So, just in case you think I’ve spent every day for the last 11 years with a silly grin on my face because I’m content and single, let me share with you what singleness sometimes is for me:
Its feeling all alone, like you don’t belong, and feeling like you are a burden to those around you. It’s hearing the when-are-you-gonna-get-married question repeat like a stuck record. It’s the endless connotation that because you’re still single, something is wrong.
It’s hearing the “helpful suggestions” of others to try online dating, put yourself out there more, be more approachable and try to smile more. It’s having your married friends give you well-meaning platitudes like, “God is your husband,” while you know they will go home that night to their husband and kids and you will go home to your dog.
It’s looking at social media to see endless engagements, wedding pics, relationship status changes, anniversaries, couples posing for pics and families on vacations. It’s seeing a barrage of Valentine’s Day posts for a solid WEEK! It’s hearing that stupid “He went to Jared” commercial for the whole month of February.
It’s taking the road less traveled. It’s taking a path that most don’t understand. It’s being hopeful and waiting expectantly only to be crushed when once again, a relationship doesn’t work out. It’s not knowing when the journey will end. It’s having hope that the wait will be over soon while knowing the reality is that it might be many more years yet.
It’s praying for your single friends to get married, and then watching them get married. It’s the long, hot, dry, desert of “nothing is happening.” It’s the frustration of waiting on God and going years without dates, while observing others who are not waiting on God and seeing that their dating life is busier than a mosquito at a nudist colony.
It’s worrying that you’re getting old or turning into a hermit. It’s noticing that you’ve become set in your ways and wondering if you could change them now. It’s wondering why you suddenly think cats are so cute.
It’s lying in bed at night wondering if you’re crazy to believe this whole thing. If maybe you should have given that guy another chance. If somewhere down the line you missed it. If maybe you don’t know how to hear from God after all. If maybe God doesn’t really care about our dating life. If maybe he doesn’t exist at all.
That’s what singleness is to me sometimes. And I think it’s that way for most singles. But I also know that it’s just Bible 101 that the longer the wait, the bigger the blessing. God invited me (and you) into the “Waiting” club because it’s a great honor to be counted as one of the ones who have suffered in this way. Yes, waiting is a form of suffering. It’s very painful at times, but there really is a reward for it. Both in this world and in Heaven. And God doesn’t forget those rewards.
I think John Owen said it best when he said, “The house built on the sand may oftentimes be built higher, have more fair parapets and battlements, windows and ornaments, than that which is built upon the rock; yet all gifts and privileges equal not one grace.”
Watching the “houses” of others being thrown up quickly and extravagantly can sure make our mouths water for what they’ve got. Especially when we look over at our little house being built on the rock and there is only a few lonely stacks of bricks for the foundation. But God isn’t in this for the sprint, he’s in it for the marathon. We all know that those pretty houses on sand won’t stand up to the years and pressures of real life and spiritual warfare.
God’s plan for a house built on the rock is one that outlasts all the other plans constructed by me and you. His plans are kingdom plans. Royal plans for a royal family with royal rewards. And we aren’t waiting for God’s plan to take effect – it’s already in effect. We are now waiting for the conclusion of the plan. What he is building for you may not look like much right now, but in a few years, people are going to be in awe of what he has done! It’s all part of his plan for those in the waiting club.
Right now, God is holding the plans for your future in his hands and on the top of the plans for your house are written the words, “House on the rock – In Progress – Waiting on God.” He has a big smile on his face because he knows what the outcome of those plans are and it is oh, so good! But now he’s looking at you and his question to you is, “Can you wait?” The truth about waiting on God!
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