Our vision is so limited. In our human frailty, we simply cannot see or understand the "Big Picture" of God's plans for us, or for the world around us. That's actually a good thing, because if we could figure everything out on our own, we wouldn't need our loving Heavenly Father. As women, we are always waiting for something: we are waiting to grow up, we are waiting to finish our education, we are waiting to get married, or not, we are waiting for our first baby, then we are waiting (anxiously) for that first baby to hurry up and make his or her entrance into the world, then we might be waiting for baby two, three, four, and so on . . . . then we are waiting for them to walk, talk, and tie their shoes. We are then waiting for them to start school, to learn to drive, to graduate from high school, to go to college, to come home from college, to get married, or not, to get a job and start their own family. In the meantime, we are waiting patiently for our children at soccer practice, piano lessons, at dance class, at football or basketball practice, at cheerleading practice, at choir practice or at rehearsals for the spring musical. As women, we find ourselves waiting for lots of things, for long periods of time, because we love the people we are waiting for.
Waiting . . . . patiently. Or maybe not always patiently. But that is the life of a woman. We wait for everything in life that is worth the investment of our time, our energy, and most of all our love. But it is so difficult to wait for God to answer; to wait to know, to understand, to resolve conflict, to settle disagreements. But whatever we are waiting for, today right where we are living this minute, God has not forgotten us. He has a plan for our lives, but we need to remember that His plan also includes the lives of other people, and it really is not all about "me." Think about the prophet Habakkuk, when he was desperate to understand what God was doing among the His people:
"How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen?" (Hab. 1:2a) His impatience with God's seemingly slow response to his cries for help was reaching a boiling point: "I cry out to you, 'Violence!' but you do not save . . . . Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrong?" (Hab. 1:2b-3) Are you facing something in your life that seems intolerable, unjust, unimagineable, and humanly unbearable? You just might be surprised at what God has planned for you! When Habakkuk was complaining to God about all of the evil that he had witnessed all around him, he expected God to do an amazing thing and strike down the evil-doers in the midst of His people. So Habakkuk was surprised when God revealed His plan:
"Look at the nations and watch - and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told." (Hab. 1:5) Habakkuk was most certainly astounded then to hear God's plan: "I am raising up the Babylonians, that ruthless and impetuous people who sweep across the whole earth to seize dwelling places not their own. They are a feared and dreaded people; they are a law to themselves and promote their own honor . . . .guilty men, whose own strength is their god." (Hab. 1:6-7, 11)
Waiting for God to move in our lives frequently leaves us in a place of uncertainty, confusion, and fear. We must remember that even when we cannot see WHAT He is doing, we can rest in the truth of His Word and the grace in His heart, knowing that He IS doing the very best for us, because He loves us: "O Lord, are you not from everlasting? My God, my Holy One, we will not die. O Lord, you have appointed them to execute judgment; O Rock, you have ordained them to punish." (Hab:1:12) And with renewed confidence that God knew all about the evil-doers in the midst of His people, Habakkuk realized that even though he couldn't SEE what God was doing, it was nevertheless taking place just as God had ordained that it would. With that confidence, Habakkuk could then rest in the knowledge of God's sovereignty and say, "I will stand at my watch, and station myself on the rapmarts; I will look to see what He will say to me and what answer I am to give to this complaint." (Hab.2:1)
Then God reveals to Habakkuk that, even though he may not understand or be able to see what God is doing, He is trustworthy and will use even the "ruthless and impetuous" Babylonians to take care of the injustice and evil that is being perpetuated among God's people: "Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay." (Hab. 2:2-3)
What are you waiting for? Do not be discouraged, because God is working, whether we see it right now or not. And even if you feel that the time that you are investing in "waiting" is wasted, you must know that often times God uses these "hidden" times of waiting to create in us His fully-formed plan for our lives. Patience is difficult, but at least we are not left hopeless, wondering about the outcome of our waiting. He is in control, and EVEN the tragedies of life, just like those nasty ol' Babylonians, are used by God to turn our ashes into His beauty. Trust Him . . . . because He love you more than you can imagine.
If you would like to participate in this week's "In Other Words" blog meme, please visit Debbie at Chocolate and Coffee: Heart of a Pastor's Wife, where you can leave a link back to your blog post on this week's quote. Have a great Tuesday! Nina