Is It a Weight, or a Wait?
Hope is the difference.
“Jesus looked at them and said, ‘With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.’” (NIV) | Mark 10:27
Does it seem like in every season of life, we’re waiting on something? Remember, I use that word actively, not passively (see “Keep Asking Me Why I’m Single…”) but are you waiting? Are you struggling to cope with the hand you’ve been dealt and wishing you could trade it for another. Literally, trade:
- If you’re waiting on a promotion or a raise, you want to trade your current circumstance/job.
- If you’re waiting for a husband or wife, you want to trade in your singleness.
- If you’re waiting to conceive and have a baby, you want to trade your empty nest.
- If you’re repeatedly reminiscing your singleness, you may want to trade your marital commitment.
It seems like we’re never truly satisfied with what we have and we’re even encouraged to remain in the misery of discontentment. Those satisfied with their circumstances are viewed as settlers who don’t aspire for more and we’ve somehow believed the lie that we’re entitled to more than exactly what God has given us right now. Are you aware that you don’t even deserve the breath in your lungs? Whew! Try that on for perspective.
Even when we know we are blessed beyond measure, we can so easily reply with a melancholy “life is good; no complaints!…” — yet still somehow in the very depths of our souls have a longing for the next currently unfulfilled thing and actually, quite a few unexpressed complaints.
So how do we wait? The inescapable truth is that it’s not a matter of whether or not we’ll wait; but a question of how we’ll do so. There’s a sweet patience and appreciation that God builds into us by not satisfying our desires immediately. Will it be an unbearable period/season of time, or will it be our blessing not so much “in disguise?“ What if we flipped the perspective here to make this waiting not so, well…weighty.
In the book of 1 Samuel, we meet a woman named Hannah, who longed for God to bring her a child.
“In her deep anguish Hannah prayed to the LORD, weeping bitterly. And she made a vow, saying, ‘LORD Almighty, if you will only look on your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the LORD for all the days of his life’” (1 Samuel 1:10–11, NIV).
What emotions did Hannah feel? I can imagine a few: barren, broken, forgotten, sorrowful, ashamed — But she allowed that pain to humble her enough to call on the name of the Lord. She vowed to dedicate her son to the Lord all the days of his life. Her merciful Creator answered her prayer and blessed her with Samuel, who grew into the priest whom anointed King David, bloodline to Jesus Christ. God blessed Hannah’s humility, her bold prayers and her trust in Him.
Sweet friend, the answer to our prayers may not look the way we’d like; but none the less we can rest assured that if we are called according to His purpose, all things work together for good (Romans 8:28).
I once read that humility is the Lord’s remedy to keep us positioned for His blessings. Now let’s sit in this for a second: I want you to think about the emotion “Hangry.” Listen — this is a real emotion for me, so take this as seriously as you can! For those of you unfamiliar with the term, this is usually the point where something stands in between you and nourishment and is delaying your desire to fulfill that need. Therefor, you become a combination of both hungry and angry at the same “dern” time. Cue “I’m sorry for what I said while I was hungry” para.
Now, I want you to think about how you feel when you finally eat. Even if you are eating leftovers, there is suddenly a new appreciation for the food.
Could it be possible that in your waiting, God is showing you how to protect and keep your blessings? Could it be, that on this very day, God is instilling in you an appreciation for His next gift? Could it be, that in this very moment, He is actually preparing you for what is next? God knows how and when it will all end. So would it be crazy to assume that it is your future informing your present?
“Hope. Though it may itself be the very cause of hardships, does not bring the root to disgrace — rather, it proves its strength all the more.”
What does that mean? It puts into perspective how powerful the reason we even hope in the first place is!
Even when our hope is deferred, God is good. Hope is humanly inexplicable expectation anchored in truth. It is why every movie has its superhero and its villain. Every. Single. Movie that Hollywood pumps out feeds on your hope for a happy ending! Hope is believing that God has the power to work miracles out of slim chances. We hope, because our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, rose from the dead and gave us a reason to believe in miracles. Hope is believing that we can defeat figurative and literal death.
Friends, hope is what sustains us in our waiting. It is what takes us from an unbearable discontentment, to joy filled satisfaction. It is what keeps our light shining in the darkest of rooms. Hope is what alleviates the weight in the wait. Our hope is anchored in heaven.
We serve a God who specializes in what man claims has a 2% chance. His miracles become all the sweeter when they seem most impossible. The reaping becomes all the more appreciated when we remained faithful in the toiling of the sow.
Whatever our hearts are craving right now, let’s bring ourselves to remember that it’s in our soul’s waiting and sometimes complete brokenness that our Father is able to move in the most profound ways.
35 As Jesus approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 36 When he heard the crowd going by, he asked what was happening. 37 They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” 38 He called out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 39 Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 40 Jesus stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus asked him, 41 “What do you want me to do for you?”“Lord, I want to see,” he replied. 42 Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has healed you.” 43 Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God. | Luke 18:35–43
Sweet sister, let us be as faithful as the blind beggar, shouting all the more for the Son of David to have mercy on us. Let us be shining examples of what Christ is capable of when we put our faith to work. Hope has a name, and that name changes everything. #nevergiveupHope