Worth the Wait

"Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."

Psalm 27:14

I love surprises; my wife does not. When I was planning our honeymoon I really, really wanted to surprise her, but eventually I gave in to her requests for more information (she is a meticulous planner) and told her the destination - Mt. Zion National Park in Utah. My daughter is cut from the same cloth; if I even mention the word “surprise” in her presence she goes crazy, wailing at the top of her lungs, “But daddy, you KNOW I hate surprises. JUST TELL ME!!!”

Now I’d love to say I’m a model of patience, but when it comes to things of the Lord I can’t say I love waiting either. I want to know, especially when it comes to areas of my life where I’m struggling and crying out to him for guidance and direction. The more I demand to know, the more anxiety rises and peace flees; when I submit to God and let him handle those things that seem too big, peace and joy returns.

I think the biggest example of this was my struggle with loneliness and marriage - as I approached the age of 36, my cupboard was bare when it came to dating relationships. There was no one special in my life, and there hadn’t been one at that point in over five years, and that was when I wasn’t following Jesus. The more I tried making things happen, the more disappointment I seemed to experience, and I started to feel hopeless about the situation.

Then, one day in February of 2009, alone in my Seattle flat washing dishes, I had… I don’t know what to call it! I guess I would say it was an encounter with the Lord; something in my spirit moved, and I started talking to God, pouring out my heart to him about my loneliness and desire for a wife. I told him, “Lord, you know the desires of my heart. I’ve done everything I know to do to fix this issue in my life, and nothing seems to change. My heart belongs to you God; if that means a life of celibacy, I’ll be faithful and satisfied with your presence. I give this issue to you and leave it in your hands; if anything is going to change, it will come because of you.” Two weeks later I met the woman who would become my wife. :-)

Joni Eareckson Tada has a great devotional this morning about waiting - it’s called “Worth the Wait. She says, “Ah, but while we may regret a hasty decision a million times over, we will never regret waiting on the Lord. You can never go wrong as you wait and pray and still yourself in His presence, seeking His mind and heart.”

Don’t stop seeking the Lord; as one of the songs we play says, he’s in the waiting.