I’m convinced waiting is one of the hardest things in life. Right now I’m going through several areas of waiting. It is so easy to get consumed with whatever I am waiting for and miss the wonderful moments this very season of life holds for me. I loose site of the big picture and in turn loose joy. Sure, there are hard days where I’m not happy, but I never want to loose that constant undercurrent of JOY. I asked my friend Nicole, to co-write a blog post about waiting. We both ended up writing more than we expected so I’m going first and you can read hers next week. 🙂
The first area of waiting is our home renovation. We are going on year two of living in our home while under lots of construction. The constant dust and lack of organization can drive me about crazy some days. Everything came to a head one Sunday afternoon a few months ago. We had struggled with mouse issues for about a week and they kept getting worse. Daniel had put down bait and traps but with most of the rooms not being sealed to the outside and living in a row house made it even worse. We had just arrived home from church and my in-laws were arriving in the next ten minutes for lunch. One particular mouse helped himself to an early lunch of Daniel’s bait. I had a pot of rice cooking on the stove and that’s exactly where he decided to appear. Right by my pot of rice. For the in-laws.
The next few minutes were a blur of me screaming and Daniel running downstairs. He “took care of it” while I ended up sitting on the front steps outside in a heap. I was frightened, angry, tired of working in a kitchen that makes me shudder, and frankly my pride was injured. I felt helpless…I can’t help with many of the renovations. I desperately try not to nag but with each year I feel more discouraged.
The second area of waiting for me is our family. We have been waiting several years and we can’t start the adoption process until our home can pass inspections. That’s at least another year or two out. This past year I turned 30 and I’m starting to feel the clock ticking loudly. I always wanted to be a young and energetic mother. Every birthday and anniversary is a silent reminder that times is passing.
I don’t want to miss the wonderful season we are in right now because I’m only concentrating on the next. In case you are struggling with a season of waiting in your life too, I decided to share a few things that help me while I wait. My “keys to joy” if you will. 🙂
- Invest in others. It’s amazing when you take the focus off of yourself and onto others how your outlook can change. It has shown me that my situation pales to what others are going through. This is how my blog series on Motherhood started. I wanted a way to invest in other woman’s lives and give them an avenue to share their stories to encourage others.
- Perspective. This might sound cliche’ but when I have a particularly bad day, I ask myself three questions. “Do you have family that loves you?” Yes. “Do you have enough food?” Yes. “Are you forgiven?” Yes. If you have answered even one yes; you are blessed more that most people in the world. It helps me realize my particularly bad moment is just a moment. This too shall pass.
- Friends. I’m learning to be more honest. When a friend asks how I am doing, instead of saying “fine” I try to tell them exactly what is happening in my life. Even the ugly and real things. The “sit-on the-front-porch-steps-in-a-huff” things; because guess what? They are going through things too. Woman desperately need to know they aren’t alone. We need support during the hard waiting and people to celebrate with us when they finally happen. I can’t think of anything I love more that imperfect, honest souls rallying around each other in the hard and wonderful times.
Here is one of my favorite quotes on waiting:
“The work God does within us while we wait is just as important as whatever it is we are waiting for.” -Author Unknown
God promises that we will be “strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father.” Colossians 1:11-12
Be sure to read Nicole’s post next week!
take joy friends,