Then Jesus said, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let Me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light (Matthew 11:28-30, NLT).
Have you ever been in a season where you are trying your best to live a life that is pleasing to God yet it feels like you keep getting the short end of the stick in this thing called life? It almost feels like the more you pursue holiness, the more you tithe, the more you serve, the more you obey, the more you sacrifice…it just feels like you keep coming up empty. It can lead you to a place where you just question, God, what is going on?!?
Have you ever been in a season where it just felt like there was one closed door after another? I mean to the extent that it felt like a door was opening just so that it could be slammed shut right in your face before you could even walk through it…Does that sound familiar? You think there’s a yes around the corner and then boom, God hits you with a NO…It can be hard, uncomfortable, and just plain frustrating. You feel like nothing is working out the way that you want it to and it almost feels like the more you move forward, the more it feels like you’re not moving at all. What would happen if you removed the “feeling” aspect out of this thought? What would happen if instead of being emotionally led, you were led by the Holy Spirit and you allowed God to reveal to you what He is truly saying in His no…
I came across a video on youtube called “Prophetic Soaking, Beauty in the Waiting" and before I even clicked on it, the image of a waiting room came to mind. I began to think about how when you’re sitting in a waiting room you typically don’t know how long you will have to wait. You might have an expectation of how long your wait should be, but the reality is that it is not up to you when your wait is actually going to be over. What you do have control over however, is what you choose to do while you’re waiting…Can I be honest? In the waiting room that came to mind when I saw the title of the song, I was the one sitting in it. God began to show me how I’ve been in this waiting room for some time and some of the choices that I’ve made while sitting in this waiting room is to get frustrated, discouraged, doubtful, consumed by fear, focusing on the resources that I lack instead of who God is…I said I was going to be honest so I’m just going to spill my tea and if it happens to pour into your cup, just go ahead and add two lemons and sip it too.
I get it; I get that it can be difficult to have this vision of what you’re going to do, yet not be in the season where it is coming to past. I get that it can be difficult to have a passion for something and have a desire to do certain things, yet you don’t have the resources, finances, or whatever else to go after those things. I get that it can be difficult to be patient when you don’t know when the wait will be over. I get that it can be difficult to feel like things are moving yet also feel like things are standing still all at the same time. I get that it can be difficult to see other people being called from the waiting room yet you’re still there…waiting.
I get that it can be difficult to struggle with wanting to trust God’s timing but at the same time wanting to escape your current season faster than some men try to escape the friend zone. I get it…
Just in case you haven’t caught on by now, the waiting room is the season of your life that you have been in for however long. It’s that season that you’ve been expecting God to do something and you’re waiting for His response. It’s that season where you really don’t have a clue what’s next but you’re waiting for Him to give you some type of direction. It’s that season that has been difficult and it seems like you’re never going to come out of it because this is how it’s been for so long and you’re just at a point where you’re tired. Your soul feels tired because you feel like you can barely keep your head above water. It’s that season where you feel tapped out and it feels like you have nothing left to give and you so desperately need things to change. It’s that season where things feel dry; money is dried up, relationships dried up, everything is dried up and you feel by yourself. It’s that season where everyone is in a relationship, getting engaged, getting married, and you feel like you’re living for God and trying do it right yet you are single as a dollar bill with no prospects in sight. It’s that season where things seem so hectic that you question, God am I in Your will because this just can’t be right. In the midst of all this, you’re waiting and just like with any other waiting room, you don’t know how long your wait will have to be and you have no control over when your wait will come to an end.
The one thing that you do have control over is what you do while you’re waiting. So I have to ask you, what are you doing while you’re in your spiritual waiting room? Have you found yourself frustrated, complaining, discouraged, angry? It’s okay to be real with yourself because when you acknowledge the real, God can deal with that. He can handle your stuff and all that comes with it but what we’ve gotten good at nowadays is masking the “stuff” with fluff and pretending that we’re so content and trusting God. Some of us have become so good at pretending that we’ve deceived ourselves into believing this false state of contentment…
You have to realize that there’s a beauty in having a real, honest, and broken conversation with God. It’s in this time that He’s able to show you what the waiting room has revealed about you. It also allows Him to show you that there’s purpose in you being in the waiting room and that it is not in vain. Isaiah 40:31 tells us, “but they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk and not faint” (KJV). Let’s first point out the fact that the word shall is mentioned four times in this scripture to reference what the result is of those that wait on the Lord. Shall is a definite term; this isn’t a maybe, might be, could be type of situation. Shall means that there is something on the other side of your wait aka your waiting is not in vain! Don’t allow the wait to cause you to lose sight of the bigger picture and what God has on the other side of your waiting.
Secondly, let’s focus on this part about “shall renew their strength.” The Holy Spirit nicely wrecked me, titanic style, with this revelation; you find yourself getting frustrated in the waiting room because you’re focused on what you feel like you’re lacking and you fail to see that you perceive it as a lack because you’re trying to attain it in your own strength and not the Lord’s…yeah go ahead and take a moment of silence for that. Little miss independent over here, struggles with self sufficiency and it’s moments like this that the Lord has to remind me that I don’t have to depend on myself to figure everything out. Sometimes the lesson in the waiting room is to teach us how to truly be dependent on God and break that guard of self sufficiency. It’s so easy to fall into the trap of wanting to control every single aspect of your life and do this or do that all by yourself but what good is it if you reach your goal only to look back and realize that you completely left God out of the equation?
Lastly, the scripture tells us that we won’t get weary nor faint. Doesn’t this sound familiar? No? Well go with me to Galatians 6:9 right quick: “and let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not” (KJV). Perhaps you’re in the waiting room because the timing is just not right now and that's perfectly okay. I know it's a tough pill to swallow but look at it from another point of view. Perhaps, you’re in the waiting room because God is trying to protect you from operating out of season. Instead of setting you up for failure, He’s allowing you to remain in a place that will help to build your endurance and perseverance so that when the wait is over, you’re able and prepared to handle the things to come. Don't allow the fact that you aren't where you want to be to right now to make you lose sight of the reality that you just might not be as ready as you think that you are. God knows when you're ready and in due season He will open that door so in the meantime stop trying to kick down doors that aren't opened yet.
Don't get weary in this waiting room season. I know it's not always easy but there's purpose in it and no matter how long you've been waiting, it's a temporary season. Don't lose sight of that to the extent that it leads you to miss the work that God desires to do in you in this season. Seasons do change but it's not up to you when they change. You don't have the ability to change God's timing but you do have the ability to choose how you will respond in those seasons. Don't allow your go through in these times to make you miss how God is trying to grow you through the very same situation that you are trying to get out of.
"God prepare me for the war, comfort be the thing that can make a King fold." -Andy Mineo
It seriously amazes me sometimes how God will place certain things in our spirit that prepare us for something that we don't even see coming. Meanwhile we think oh its just a coincidence or it's funny that song came on that I haven't heard in awhile. I imagine God sitting back, chuckling even, as He already knows the seed that is being planted and the fruit that it is going to bear.
So let's chit chat! I remember when I first heard the song Oceans by Hillsong...I didn't like it. I know, I know, feel free to stone me and accuse me of blasphemy for disliking one of the best worship songs ever. I obviously needed to have a come to Jesus moment but I digress. I eventually fell in love with the song and obnoxiously kept it on replay while thinking of myself as the female Peter walking on water as I belted "spirit lead me where my trust is without borders. Let me walk upon the waters, wherever You would find me." As with all songs that you love, you have a tendency to play that bad boy to the point where you say I love you, I do, but I have to set you free (caw-caw). Needless to say, I played oceans out so I stopped listening to it for a couple of months and then recently I heard it on the radio. Then I heard it again mixed in with other songs and I thought to myself, "self," self said "huh?" "we need to revisit oceans" and self said "yassssss."
As oceans was dropped back in my spirit, a new song I fell in love with, You make me brave, was also on replay. I could literally feel the words of these songs tugging on my heart to the point that I started to wonder, God You're up to something aren't You? Now fast forward just a little bit; Andy Mineo has a song called uncomfortable that I legit keep on replay in my car and it has convinced me that there is a rapper on the inside of me. I listened to an interview that he did where he was asked to explain some of the lyrics from the song. The lyric that really got my attention was the first verse where he says, "God prepare me for the war, comfort be the thing that'll make a King fold." So Andy, we're on a first name basis, says the verse came about from King David's story in 2 Samuel 11. He talked about how it was custom for the King to go to war with his soldiers but it tells us in verse 1 that "King David tarried in Jerusalem," while his men were at war. As we continue to read, we see that David gets out of his bed and looks out of his window and what does he see? Bathsheba in all her glory and nakedness. He begins to lust after her and sends for her to be brought to him. He ends up sleeping with her and she becomes pregnant. Oh, I left out one minor detail...Bathsheba is actually Mrs. Bathsheba; she is MARRIED. So fast forward, King David has her husband Uriah put on the frontline at war to be killed, their baby die, and all other sorts of lovely mishaps occur. Andy says he was asking God to prepare him for where he needs to be (God prepare me for the war) even if it makes him uncomfortable because the comfort of David staying at home instead of going to war as he was supposed to, led to him falling into all sorts of temptation and sin (comfort be the thing that'll make a King fold).
So now that we're all up to speed, let's talk about being uncomfortable! Have you ever been in a position that you just felt so uncomfortable and just to make things a little bit more interesting it seemed like as you went from one uncomfortable situation, a new one popped up. You want to escape this season yet it seems like there is no way out. You think you see the light at the end of the tunnel, but no it was just the beginning of a new uncomfortable journey for you to go on. You think to yourself, "it is always something!" It feels like you can barely keep your head above water and you just want something to give because life just seems to be too much. Friend, I know it seems like it would be easier to give up then to try to pull from what appears to be the very little strength that you have left but giving up isn't an option and let me remind you why.
In 2 Samuel 11:1, it tells us that the soldiers typically went to war in the spring time and this is important to know because Israel's rainy season was usually in the winter. It was better for them to go to war in the spring when the roads were dry because ultimately the conditions were better for them to be successful. If they were to go to war out of season they would've been in conditions that would've been detrimental to them succeeding in war. So what does this have to do with you, you ask? Well you have to understand that there's a purpose in you being where you need to be. Oftentimes when God is trying to shift us to a place that makes us uncomfortable, our immediate reaction is God I don't want to have to fight this battle! We fail to realize that God is leading us there because He knows that the conditions are set up for us to be victorious. There's purpose in you being where you need to be but you're willing to abandon that purpose just because it leads you to a place that makes you uncomfortable. You have to understand that God has already set a provision in place prior to sending you to your current destination. During the winter, when it was rainy, that's when crops were planted and in the spring time those same crops were ready to be harvested which created a food supply for the soldiers who were going to war. The war was in the spring but the provision was made before they set out for war. There are seeds that God has planted in you and it may seem that you continue to encounter storms but those storms are just a part of the provision to water the seeds that are going to be harvested later on. The storms might be uncomfortable but trust that God isn't allowing you to face those storms without a purpose in mind for your benefit (Romans 8:28).
I'm sure you're thinking, that sounds all good and dandy but it's easier said then done. Trust me, I know! I have been in an uncomfortable place for months and as I'm encouraging you with this I am also preaching to myself. God has used this time to show me that Instead of fully trusting Him, I go into fix it mode and try to figure out how I can change this or that or make it right. He reminded me that Hebrews 11:1 says "faith is the substance of things hoped for but the evidence of things not seen." As He reminded me of this scripture the question was then proposed, how uncomfortable is it to walk in obedience when you have no idea what the outcome is going to be? It's not easy and it's extremely uncomfortable....but that's faith. Faith is saying God, I want to be where You are even if that requires me to be uncomfortable right now. I want to be where You are even if that requires me to be in a broken dry place that I don't quite understand. I don't want to miss out on what You have for me simply because I would rather be comfortable versus being uncomfortable and in Your will. God, prepare us for the war even if it's difficult; even if we get our feelings and egos hurt in the fighting/pruning process. We can't afford to allow our desire to live an easy and comfortable life to lead us to miss out on where God desires for us to be. I can honestly say that I have absolutely no answer for how this season is going to come together or when, even if, it will end. What I do know is in the moments when I am worried and even afraid, I'm sweetly reminded of the song You make me brave. When I'm questioning why I have to deal with x,y, or z, I'm reminded of myself singing "Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders," and wanting the lyrics to be more than just a song. God knows what He's doing, I promise you He does. Trust Him in this uncomfortable season because although you may not understand, He has a plan to use it for your good. Don't get discouraged.