What Are You Waiting For?

We bought the split-level house knowing there were three sets of stairs; one has only five treads; the others are your basic ten. I navigate them all without much thinking.

One morning on my way to go meet my friends for our power walk, I grabbed my car-keys, purse and water bottle, ready to jaunt down the stairs leading to the garage–the stairwell is equipped with a motion-light as you open the door. But as soon as I closed the door behind me, I found myself in pitch-black darkness and almost tripped! Thankfully, I stood still. When I realized no amount of motion was going to trigger the lazy light, I gave up waiting and descended cautiously, counting each carpeted step beneath my walking shoes. I wasn’t certain I’d reached the bottom landing until I knew I was on tile. I breathed a sigh of relief and reached out to find the garage door handle. God’s message for me that day: waiting can be the difference between a positive beginning to my day and a twisted ankle!

Having patience while waiting can be the most challenging discipline to endure.

  • Parents wait for a wayward child to return.
  • Teachers wait for students to settle down.
  • Friends wait for the person sitting across from them to put down their phone.
  • And mothers wait to birth their babies, if they’re to be blessed with children.

Even when blessings are promised, as in Sarah’s case: Abraham’s wife seemed to wait her entire life (ninety long years) to become a mother (and nearly gave up; Genesis 18.) It appeared she would never give birth, though God had promised. Have you ever had the deep assurance of some future, positive outcome, only to find the dangling carrot remains just past your reach? Trusting God and waiting on Him for the results can be excruciating.

As immature children, when you were forced to wait, you practically ached for what’s next, as on a long car trip. “When are we gonna be there?” Almost as painful as waiting for Santa Claus’ arrival. Fast forward to middle-school days, and you haven’t studied for that upcoming test, and waiting becomes mixed with a severe sense of dread.

In any case, when anticipation escorts anxiety, we’re often the ones who sent it an invitation.

For a number of years, my life exuded co-dependent anxiety. I was a people-pleaser who often said ‘Yes’ without hesitation. Conversely, it was baffling when someone asked me to wait on their answer. I can still recall a friend offering me this truth:

“You don’t owe anybody an explanation.”

Lacking boundaries in general was an indication of how off-track I’d become. What arose in my immature mind, whenever someone stopped short of giving me a ‘Yes,’ was a type of rejection. “They really don’t like your plans. Or you.” No wonder I never paused to reflect, to consider my options. I needed to understand: I’m valuable enough to have others wait.

It wasn’t until I began to accept and to apply God’s unconditional love to the weak woman I saw reflected in the mirror, that I began to grow in the safety of His love, to fully embrace the notion that it was often in my best interest—and God’s will–to simply “wait.”

In essence, I prayed the words of David in the 25th Psalm. It begins this way:

To You, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, I trust in You. Let me not be ashamed. Let not my enemies triumph over me. Indeed, let no one who waits on You be ashamed. Let those be ashamed who deal treacherously without cause. Show me Your ways, O Lord. Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me.

And it ends with these verses:

Keep my soul, and deliver me. Let me not be ashamed, for I put my trust in You. Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, for I wait for You.

Though David’s words are dramatic, they express how faithful God has been to instruct me. My enemies include all kinds of temptations (metaphorically, to rush down those dark stairs), and the temptation to try to please others. But when I place the words of this scripture (and others) into my personal prayer, I plead with God for help. I need understanding for simple things which used to baffle me. The reward: progress. And peace of mind. Even wisdom will come, which leads to me intuitively knowing how to handle all kinds of situations.

What are you waiting for?

Grace & Such strives to advance Christian growth among women. While we believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God, we also recognize human interpretations are imperfect. Grace & Such encourages our readers to open their Bibles, pray for wisdom and study for themselves what the Word says. For more about who we are, please visit the About Us page.
Sarah Blizzard Robinson
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  1. Gretchen Hanna on August 11, 2017 at 9:02 AM

    So many pearls of wisdom, friend.
    “In any case, when anticipation escorts anxiety, we’re often the ones who sent it an invitation.”

    “‘Lacking boundaries in general was an indication of how off-track I’d become. What arose in my immature mind, whenever someone stopped short of giving me a ‘Yes,’ was a type of rejection. “They really don’t like your plans. Or you.” ‘

    We reforming people pleasers have work to do in this area. And, as you alluded to in your post, we must arm ourselves in His Word so that we can pray and focus ourselves away from the lies that we aren’t worthy, are missing the mark (when we set boundaries), etc.

    So appreciate your insights.

  2. Sarah Robinson on August 11, 2017 at 10:30 AM

    Thank you, Gretchen. Waiting really has gotten easier, from both perspectives.

  3. Carol on August 11, 2017 at 8:27 PM

    Since I’m in a waiting season right now, I found your essay to be very encouraging. I am going to start praying Psalm 25, too. You always write such inspiring words.

  4. Sarah Robinson on August 12, 2017 at 7:19 AM

    Lean in on God’s faithful word, Carol. I’ve been taught to place my name in scripture and pray His words right back to Him. While you wait, know that He is at work on your behalf. Thank you for your encouragement, too.

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