I love the start of January, I love how it feels like the beginning of something big and unknown. It’s exciting yet also a little terrifying. Our minds become filled with our hopes, dreams and expectations for the year ahead.
Yet, if we get real for a second it can also be a time when we become very aware of what we haven’t got, where we haven’t been, and what we haven’t done. It can be a huge reminder that we’re not where we thought we would be by now.
Maybe you ended 2018 in a ‘not yet’ season of life, and you’re afraid that the season is going to drag into this new year ahead.
If that’s you, then the first thing you need to know is this – you’re not alone. We’ve all been there.
The waiting game can feel like dead space, like a grey period, a waste of your potential. Whether you’re waiting on a person, for a plan to unfold, for someone to notice what you’ve got to offer, or just a little bit of clarity for the future – patience is tough. I feel you!
But I’ve come to realise through experience that we make the waiting game a lot harder than God intended it to be. In the Bible, Paul (one of the most genius people to have ever lived) described times of waiting like this:
“We are enlarged in the waiting. We, of course, don’t see what is enlarging us. But the longer we wait, the larger we become, and the more joyful our expectancy” – Romans 8:25 (MSG)
So, if Paul is telling us that the more we wait, the more joyful we become, then clearly we’ve got something wrong somewhere along the way? How can we get a little bit of this kind of waiting in our lives?
When it comes to God, waiting isn’t dead space, its full of life.
It isn’t a time of grey, it’s bright and colourful.
It isn’t a waste of our potential, it’s helping us to become all that we can be.
Isn’t this great news?!
I think our problem is that we’ve got the wrong idea about what patience should actually look like in our lives. We think of patience as just simply waiting, but I’d like to re-define it as what we do while we wait.
Patience isn’t about helplessly letting life stand still, patience is about chasing after God even when we haven’t seen Him come through for us in the way we want yet, patience is about looking forward for what’s to come while also being happy with where we are and what we already have.
Patience is gratitude. Patience is preparation. Patience is trust.
After-all, God’s timing is perfect, right? He knows what He’s doing with you, He’s just moving the pieces of your life around, He will come through right on time. His time.
So enjoy your ‘not-yet’ season – the full, vibrant, expectant time it was always meant to be.