Recently, a favorite author shared the following poem in her monthly email. I love serendipitous moments like that. The poem fits so well with thoughts from this past week on waiting on the Lord.
Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay.
We should like to skip the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new.
And yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through some stages of instability—
and that it may take a very long time.
And so I think it is with you;
your ideas mature gradually—let them grow,
let them shape themselves, without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today what time
(that is to say, grace and circumstances acting on your own good will)
will make of you tomorrow.
Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming within you will be.
Give Our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you,
and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself
in suspense and incomplete.
The So What
My family, friends, and I tend to be fixers, problem-solvers — capable, able to do “it” on our own and have plenty of advice for others who appear to need help. Consequently, I want to offer unsolicited advice or offer to brainstorm possibilities, generating ideas. Recently, in my readings and ponderings, I realized that offering too many words can, of course, potentially disrupt the slow work of God.
I can become frustrated, irritable, even resentful at times with God’s timing. Obviously, being patient would be better – I’m just not there yet. Indeed, I don’t want to circumvent the sanctifying process, which often includes struggle. I’m reminded of a butterfly in its final stages emerging from the cocoon. It struggles mightily to free itself, and in the process, strengthens its wings to survive on the outside.
So, I’m back to waiting on the Lord and trusting His timing. Specifically, God’s timing allows for seasons of growth and maturity in our lives. In Ecclesiastes 3:1, Solomon states, “For everything there is an appointed time, and an appropriate time for every activity on earth” These seasons include learning, pruning, struggling, and personal growth. His timing also allows for our preparation and development before He brings His plans to fruition. How awesome it is to trust in the Creator God, who in “kairos” will bring about His work … on time, never late, never early.
Father, You who at just the right time
Created all things, You also sustain all things –
And You sustain me – providing everything
I need for life and godliness. Surely, You have written
My days in Your book, placed me on Your path,
And lead me in Your ways. May I not pull away,
Running ahead, veering off, seeking a path of my own,
But may I instead keep in step with the Spirit –
Patient in waiting, bearing Your yoke with gladness.