Psalm 130:1-2, 5, “Out of the depths I cry to you, LORD; LORD, hear my voice. Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy … I wait for the LORD, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.” (NIV)
There was a time I absolutely HATED waiting. It was pure punishment, torture even. But God has done a mighty work in me, and now? Now, that hatred has been replaced by only a very strong dislike of waiting. It has only taken God and me about 30 years to get me this place. There may be a ways for me to go yet.
My lessons learned in waiting began early. In junior high and high school, all the other girls had boyfriends and dates on the weekends. But not me. Those nights would find me hanging out in my room or commiserating with my friends-the only other two girls without boyfriends.
In college and after it was the same song, different verse. All I want is a boyfriend turned into all I want is a husband. Let me tell you, you can do some pretty stupid stuff when you are hyper-focused on a desire to the exclusion of all else.
You may be asking what my relationship with the Lord was like during those years. Well, rest assured that I went to church every Sunday and read my Bible. At least I read the verses I liked. And my prayers were fervent, if not very effectual. “Lord, why can’t I get married like everyone else?”
After waiting forever, God must have decided to send my husband to me before I did some real damage. We met at church. He sat right next to me and invited me to dinner that very day. I wasn’t able to go, but we were married before a year had passed. I was 30 years old.
Because of my age, we wanted to start a family right away. Easy peasy, right? WRONG! It felt like car tires screeching to a halt on the highway.
That’s when I got really serious. Because of course God meant for us to have a family that includes children. Surely. So, let’s get the doctors involved and the fertility treatments and the meds. The hyper-focus took over, again.
After a while (okay a couple of years), I called a friend from college who knew all about me and my past. “Why?” was my question for her. Was it all the really stupid things I’d done to my body? “No,” she said. A real relationship with God was the answer.
Well, frankincense and myrrh! That would call for a whole lot of time on my face repenting and actually listening for God. And then, the hardest thing of all- obedience in the waiting!
“God! Do you know how long this could take?” “Yes.” he answered. “You better get started.” Oh to have been like Hannah who sought the Lord’s face first and always in her distress. No surrogate mothers for her! Only time spent in lament before the Lord.
Crushed in soul, Hannah prayed to God and cried and cried—inconsolably. Then she made a vow:
If you’ll take a good, hard look at my pain,
If you’ll quit neglecting me and go into action for me
By giving me a son,
I’ll give him completely, unreservedly to you.
I’ll set him apart for a life of holy discipline. I Samuel 1:10-11 MSG
Because waiting is my Achilles heel, God teaches me lots of lessons in the waiting room of my life. And, as soon as I stop running around the room screaming at the injustice of my wait, God speaks to my battered heart.
It’s still a work in process and may always be. It could be that waiting is the thorn in my flesh. And now when I find myself there in the waiting room, I quiet my heart a little sooner than I did 30 years ago and listen for what my Savior says.
Today, my husband and I have two beautiful children, one we adopted and one we delivered. They are both answers to prayer. Good things do come to those who wait!
Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord. Psalm 27:14 KJV
Hey there friend! Andrea McCaskey here. I believe everything happens for a reason, life is meant to be lived in relationship with others and there is beauty to be found everywhere if we look. I am a friend of God, wife of Jamal and mother of Brandon and Madison.
To read more of Andrea’s Breath on Paper bio, click here.