Here’s another blog post I’ve made you all wait for, that of how to be patient in life. ;) Seriously, I had some thoughts written down for this about two years ago, when I had this revelation about how I can learn to be patient and actually enjoy the present moment. Now, you all should know by now that not only do I have to be patient for a lot of things, I hate doing it. But I have to because God says so and He gets to decide. Believe me, there is nothing I fight God more on than that of waiting for things in my life. :’) Sometimes I get my way, but mostly I don’t. :D The fact of the matter, though, is that having patience is important in life, and even I recognize that. People who wait for things and let God have their futures are going to ultimately make better decisions because they won’t feel like they have to do things out of desperation.
But of course it’s easier said than done, especially if you’re someone like me where this isn’t one of your “gifts.” But I have learned from trial and error that by not being patient, or by being upset when you have to wait, does only end up hurting you, and God can give you more than that if you let Him.
I had a moment that did act as a breakthrough for me in learning something valuable about this, though, both about trusting God in the waiting and how to actually enjoy life while waiting, both things I struggle with. This happened during the end of my eighth grade year, and this was a time where I was especially restless and eager to do more with my life. I was right about at a transition period, with looking ahead to high school, and so I had much anticipation about that. In addition to those contemplations, I also witnessed a lot of people at my church getting to do things for God’s glory I wish I could’ve at the time but knew I was much too young. And I felt down a lot. It seemed impossible for me to enjoy where I was, though I tried my best to, and thankfully God was patient with me as I did. But finally, one night, something hit me.
I got home from church where these godly people had encouraged me—all proof in and of itself about how God cares about your needs and will provide—and I was looking at my bookshelf holding books spanning from young adult fiction to theological nonfiction books. I saw one book in particular that is one of my favorites to date, The Chase by Kyle and Kelsey Kupecky—the tagline for the book being “How to Trust God with Your Happily Ever After.” This is a book primarily about marriage and waiting for the right guy—I talk about it more here and am going to write much further about its impact on my life in the future because like I said, it’s an all time favorite of mine—but all of a sudden, the tagline ringing in my mind, I thought about something.
Trusting God with your happily ever after. I had always trusted Him with my future husband. I did not get mad at Him because, hey, I’ve been praying for my future husband at least dating back to when I was eleven years old (I wrote a letter to him here you can read as proof and as embarrassment for me), but he’s not here yet almost three years later, so what are You doing, God?
No, I would never say that because as much as I may have thought I was ready to be married right then—and ha, I probably would have because I think about my future husband all the time, especially at those hockey games ;)—that is still insane to expect God to make him show up then—why? Because I was only fourteen years old and that’s ILLEGAL! I can’t even legally get married until I’m eighteen, so why would God put my husband in my life at that point? And I realized that, is that NOT how it is with everything He makes us wait for? It may not be because it’s illegal in every case to do something before a certain age—but the bottom line is, God knows the big picture and when you are ready for something in life. There is no way, as an eighth grader, I would have been ready to get married at that time. To expect God to do that for me then, regardless of how long I’d been praying, would not make sense, and I could see that.
At my beloved hockey games
Sometimes you can’t always see why you have to wait, and I can testify to that, but this opened up my eyes because I know obviously I will get married one day, but to expect it THEN and get mad at God for not delivering would be insane on my part. But really, this would be true for everything God makes us wait for if we had the perspective He did on our whole entire lives. And it reassured me greatly, because it finally opened up my eyes to see that (a) waiting is not pointless, and (b) waiting does not mean no.
The second thing I learned, continuing to tie in with this revelation about waiting on my future husband, is that as a kid, I never stopped loving my life just because I was waiting for my husband. I just knew it was not that time for him to be in my life, and why would I waste the season I’m in now when I knew that would come eventually? I just trusted God to provide that in His timing and, in the meantime, enjoy every moment of life He blesses me with.
Why is it not the same with everything else I must wait for?
It can be. I know waiting can get old, which is why you have to be intentional in how you view it. Patience is a good thing and a wonderful trait to have—that is why it’s part of the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22). And if you’re like me, it may be one of your weakest areas. But learn from my mistakes and all the time I wasted being upset when I didn’t need to be. And that season in eighth grade? I look back at it now, thinking how sometimes I would just like to have one more day with that. I had some amazing people I connected with at that time, and it was a really special time in my relationship with God. Now the pressures of high school have set in—which I quickly learned that I put way too many expectations on to be great—and it makes that time in life look amazing. But is it possible that I may think the same about high school one day—or maybe not high school itself, but just that time in my life of being young and having so much ahead of me? I act like that’s a terrible thing, like I want more, now, but the truth is that it really does fly.
I want to enjoy every second because it really does only come once. College, marriage, future dreams—if God has that in store for your life, they’re going to come, trust me, but don’t let the eagerness and anticipation of that paralyze you now. I love to dream, I love making college plans and thinking about my future husband and what I want to do with my writing, and I think that’s totally fine, but the problem comes when you let thoughts of the future keep you from enjoying where God has you right now. I shared all of my revelations about that here in my prayer to God about this year in high school, asking specifically that He’d help me to remember this, and He has been faithful.
I know you want to see results and are probably eager to do more, but trust that God knows each of those feelings and promises to provide (Galatians 6:9). I’ve had so many moments where, when I am least expecting them, God will do something I could have only dreamed of, or when I am at the end of my rope, He will give me that reminder to keep going. That’s not to say we can manipulate God into giving us what we are waiting for right away just by throwing a fit (believe me, I have already tried this, and He sees right through it :D). Because sometimes it is a matter of how much you trust Him and what He’s already promised you, and will you believe that or throw a fit just because it’s not here when you want it? He does want the best for you with everything, for His glory, and He knows what that is much more than we could ever comprehend in our finite, limited minds. It’s not easy in the moment to remember this, but just tell yourself to believe it the most when you don’t “feel” like it. As a teenage girl, I can promise you that feelings are fickle and do not determine the truth (more on this here). Cry if you need to, because sometimes that helps also, but then remind yourself, again and again of the truth: God is working on your behalf. He loves you. He wants the best for you like any loving parent. He has good plans for you. <3 Enjoy what He has blessed you with right now.