Waiting. Waiting, praying, hoping, begging God to move and make something happen – sometimes it is just flat out HARD. So what do we do? The "right" answer would be to trust God in the wait… but how do we move toward trusting when our heart is crying out for Him to do something…and to do it faster?
Here are 3 principle’s that I’ve learned through my personal waiting seasons, that I hope will lead you to a more restful trust in God in your personal time of waiting:
1. Be transparent with God in how you’re feeling. TELL HIM.
We don’t have to be "Christiany" with God. We don’t have to have the "right" words that match all the fix-it Bible verses people pass around like band-aids. Sometimes the theology and the rules we’ve grown up with are getting in the way of really being honest with God. Doesn’t God want a heart-to-heart, real relationship with each of us? Doesn’t He already know our thoughts and feelings? We may as well be honest! If we’re going to have a personal relationship with Him – let’s tell Him how we’re honestly feeling. In Psalm 142, King David shares openly how he’s feeling with God as he writes these emotion-filled phrases:
"I cry aloud to the Lord." "I lift up my voice to the Lord…"
"I pour before Him my compliant…" "I tell Him my trouble…"
Like David, we can cry out to God and pour before Him our complaints! We can get out a spiral notebook, make it our "prayer journal" and be completely honest and bare before God by writing out our raw prayers. He is never impatient with us. He is never annoyed with us. He is never overwhelmed with our emotions. He wants us to come to Him and trust Him with our hearts. He can handle our feelings and He can guide us toward the right ones! So have freedom in being real and transparent with God – tell Him all you’re feeling and then commit to trusting Him with the outcomes. In time, He will prove to you that you can trust Him!
2. Find the Balance between taking steps and waiting for specific direction.
Most of us have a tendency to do one of two things while waiting for God to move. We either are "doers" and start to think about how we can solve this problem, who we can talk to, what we can do, when we will do it, and basically we just take control. The other extreme is we just sit and wait. We pray and pray and pray…and continue to wait and wait and wait for some sort of a sign. We refuse to move and expect God to do something even though we won’t!
Really, what we need while waiting is a balance between the two. So how would this balance play out in our lives? Of course, there is no formula, but let’s first start with praying. Pray before ANY movement and act of control. THEN ask God to reveal any steps we should be taking, and take them! Is there a person you should speak to for advice? Is there a courageous conversation you need to initiate? Are there skills you need to invest in developing? Take a step and then pray again. Listen for God’s response. Make extra time alone and undistracted with God a high priority. Be serious about prayer, but also take some steps and see what doors God opens and closes.
3. Don’t give up on your faith.
Keep praying, keep asking, and keep the faith. I believe as we continue to trust God with our waiting that He begins to make Himself known to us in ways we would have never experienced without the struggle. Our relationship with Him grows deep and mature through the waiting because we’re now living out the faith that we’ve learned about in Sunday School. The theology and Bible verses and women’s conferences we’ve attended…they now are having an opportunity be made real in our lives. God is refining us! James in the Bible (The Message version) says it best – Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way. If you don’t know what you’re doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. You’ll get his help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it. (James 1:2-7) So today, if you are in a season of waiting I can’t give you perfect, pat-answers. I can’t give you reasons for your hardships. But I can pray through this season with you. And I can encourage you to not give up. I can tell you truthfully that God hears your cries so keep praying with transparency, and continue moving forward in the steps He’s put on your heart. Hold on tight to your hope in this promise from 1 Peter 5:10 –
After you have suffered a little while Jesus will personally restore, establish, strengthen and support you.
He will show Himself faithful in this to you!
Love & Blessings,
View the LIVE Facebook Broadcast video (below) to receive the full teaching on this topic of "Waiting"! (Intro class to our "Refine" Online Bible Study.)
CLICK HEREto learn more about the Refine online study and to register!
CLICK HEREto register for the "Refine" Online Bible Study taking place August 16 – October 11, 2016! Once you are registered you will be added to the FaceBook group to view all of the study materials and Live Broadcast teachings from Allison!
to download Week 1 of the Personal Bible Study Guide!