Waiting rooms are a just a part of life. We’ve all been stuck within the four walls of the dreaded waiting room. Sometimes I feel like I am stuck sitting in God’s waiting room. I show up on time for my appointment, I check in, and wait for God to call my name. It is very hard to be patient in God’s waiting room. I am sitting there today. Perhaps you are in the room with me. Has God asked you to do something, but the next step isn’t clear?
“Waiting Room,” the very name of this room gives itself away. We enter for the single purpose of waiting until we are called. We select our seat of choice and begin the wait. The wait might be short, or we may be waiting a very long time. It is one of the mysteries of the waiting room; the length of the wait is uncertain. After a few moments, we settle into the back of our chair and exhale, taking in our surroundings. We surrender to the wait. After all, we have absolutly no control over the situation. All of the huffing and puffing and clock watching will not speed up our time one bit. If we are lucky there is a window or a TV to help pass the time. Perhaps there is even a loud talker on his or her cell phone. I do love piecing together an interesting phone conversation. (Being a quiet phone talker myself when amidst other strangers, and I am always amazed at the decibel in which some people feel comfortable speaking).
The tricky thing about God’s waiting room, is that the waiting could take moments or years. In obedience we stay ready to take the next step, but what in the world do we do while we wait? As I have been struggling over the last several weeks, I came up with 5 things to do in God’s waiting room. Join me in trying a few this week:
5 THINGS TO DO IN GOD’s WAITING ROOM (in no particular order):
- Enjoy God’s Word. Stop searching for answers and just enjoy reading God’s Word. Sometimes it is in the midst of just reading the Bible for pleasure that we are given confirmation or direction, and it can ironically be missed with the mindset of desperately searching for answers. A clear mind is much more open to hearing the Holy Spirit speak through God’s written Word. Start by reading Psalm 103.
- Fellowship. We can be so bogged down with needing to focus on God’s directions for us, that we can feel too busy, distracted, or tired to meet with others. Yet, sometimes the enjoyment of spending time with friends can be just what we need to clear our head, even if only for a short while. Time spent with Godly friends uplifts us and encourages our walk with God. I am blessed every time I get together with my “God-Gals,” as I like to refer to my close sweet friends who love the Lord and whom I can count on to pray for me, as I enjoy doing for them.
- Take a baby step. Maybe God hasn’t given you the green light or go ahead, and perhaps the map to the final destination is still unclear. Is there a small step you can take instead? Sometimes we get so caught up in the big picture, that we miss the important small steps that God lays in front of us. What looks like small stuff to us, may be the pivotal step or connection needed to go forward. “We make our plans, but the LORD determines our steps,” Proverbs 16:9 (New Living Translation).
- Pray. OK that’s obvious, right? This is a sneaky one. But if you are like me, I find myself doing a lot of thinking about something, which is not the same thing as praying about something. The enemy knows there is power in prayer, so we have to be extra vigilant here. He will do all he can to distract us and keep us from praying. In the absence of prayer, worry and confusion, there are liable to be mainstays in the waiting room.
- Enjoy the joy. There is joy all around you, yes even in a waiting room. Nothing feels more trapped and helpless as waiting an undetermined amount of time, but when we are forced to be still, if we look, we will notice God’s beauty and creation quietly performing all around us. Whether it is in dappled sunlight dancing off the trees, or a quiet cobweb spider delicately dancing in the corner of the base boards, God enjoys the beauty and offers us to notice His creation. When we remember to enjoy the joy, we balance the heaviness of our heart. Jesus tells us that His burden is light. Read Matthew 11:28-30. Perhaps the simple reminder of God’s creation can help us see the extra burdens we need to let go of before God will call us out of the waiting room.
Waiting rooms are never easy, and I write this for myself: God made the plan, and if I truly submit to His plan, then I submit to the wait for His timing in God’s waiting room.
Father, help me wait. I said yes to what I felt was your calling, but here I sit not knowing my next step. I don’t like to wait; calm my anxious soul. I want to serve you; direct my path, keep me following your direction. Help me to hold fast to what you have called me to do; don’t let me quit on you. I am but dust, and I am liable to crumble under pressure; be my strength and my Rock. Let me not compare myself to others; Your call for me is unique to me. In the precious name of Jesus, Amen.