Are you waiting for answers? Isn’t everyone waiting for something? Wouldn’t it be ideal if we could make a wish before we go to sleep and see it come true in the morning?
I wish! (pun totally intended)
But God’s smarter than that.
Our family has lived in our rental home now for almost five years. To my husband and I, five years feels like eternity. You see, we both grew up in families that moved every four years or so. This meant a new bedroom to personalize, a new neighborhood to explore, a new school and new friends — friends who didn’t know the previous “us” so we could ultimately adjust and improve upon our personalities, try them on, and no one would be the wiser.
Granted, I still ended up being the genuine “me.” And my husband ended up being the genuine “him.”
All that being said, at around the four year mark in our current home, we both felt the itch to move. It’s ingrained in our fibers. You could say the feeling’s a part of our makeup and who we were shaped into being during those years of constant moving state to state, home to home.
But God isn’t ready for us to move homes. Yet. As most of us have come to know, even if we don’t understand it, He does things on his own terms and on his own timeline. Which means, for now, we’re staying put whether we like it or not.
A friend of mine once told me “God only issues you your ticket right before you need it.”
“Basically, say you have plans to take a train somewhere unknown yet glorious. You have to show up to the train station to be issued your ticket so you can then hand it to someone as you’re getting on.”
You see, what’s the point in holding on to your ticket? What good does that do you? Why, you might lose it or focus so hard on it you lose sight of everything else that matters in life.
It’s the same with airplanes and movies and… you get the idea.
I find I don’t get discouraged every time we pray about moving to a new home. Instead, I feel an uncontrollable excitement for what God has in store for our family. Does that make it easier to play the waiting game? Absolutely not.
But can you blame me for conditioning my thoughts to redirect and possibly mask my innermost feelings of frustration and impatience? It’s a whole lot better than feelings sorry for myself or harboring anxiety. I’m actually doing what God tells me to do. Trust Him, no matter how long it takes. It probably and thankfully won’t take 40 years in a desert. I guess it could. But… never mind.
So, our home isn’t perfect. In fact, it’s not at all the place we envisioned ourselves living in our early 30s with kids. Like many new parents, we saw ourselves living in a beautiful white, wooden-gated home with a large backyard and garden, a beautiful view, maybe some land to play on, loving neighbors and never-ending (flat) sidewalks our kids could learn to ride bikes on.
In reality, we live in an out-of-date, poorly taken-care-of rental home on a loud corner lot with a few grouchy neighbors and zero backyard.
But we do have a view of lush, green trees and a mountain landscape. And we do have sidewalks. And we do have a couple caring, sweet neighbors.
And despite the outdated maroon carpet and blue laminate kitchen countertops, the home feels like it was built solely for us to raise our messy, rambunctious toddlers in. Which is perfect because that’s what we’ve been using it for. Yes, God had a master plan for us maybe not to purchase that beautiful home (just yet). For if we were already in our perfect home, our white carpet wouldn’t be white for long.
And ultimately, to me, our home IS beautiful because it’s OUR home.
When God tests your patience, it generally means he has plans to help you prosper. Not the other way around. He’s helping you weather storms because he wants you to lean on him when you’re waiting. When we go through trials He’s actually waiting to see how you’ll respond. Will you stop rejoicing in what you have, stop praising Him and cease praying? Or will you turn to other worldly sources for answers?
Because if we’re to follow God then we should probably listen to Him when we make our plans. If we don’t, then the plans we make may not be His and we, therefore, fall off the path and ultimate plans He has for our lives.
Is this making any sense?
So when I think about what God has in store for our family, it makes me giddy. I don’t care how long I have to wait because He has it all worked out and all I have to do is trust that He’ll let me know when it’s time to move.
Literally and figuratively.
References: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness..” (Galatians 5:22); “Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:4); “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16–18); “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:2); “For all that is in the world — the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life — is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” (1 John 2:16–17), “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11); “The Israelites had moved about in the wilderness forty years until all the men who were of military age when they left Egypt had died, since they had not obeyed the LORD.” (Joshua 5:6); “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” (Matthew 24:36)