I remember waiting for my mom to finish her chemotherapy years ago. We’d count down the weeks until she’d be done. My dad planted a tree so we could wait for it to blossom, the same way we were waiting and praying for my mom to get better. We waited for her to finish radiation, then surgery, then at last, she finished with her treatments. Now it’s been seven years, and I hardly remember how hard those days were.
I remember waiting to plant a church. We had meetings where we dreamed and envisioned and hoped and prayed. It took a long time to see that church go from a dream and a few conversations to a group of people who faithfully dedicate themselves to becoming passionate followers of Jesus. But now we’ve been a church family for over four years, and I hardly remember how hard those first days were.
I remember when I told my friend for the first time about my experience with sexual assault. I had been waiting to be heard for so long. The waiting felt like my soul was dying, like I was walking around with third-degree burns, just waiting for someone to notice. I told my friend, and on a summer evening, she offered space for me to begin to heal. It felt like I’d waited for so long. That was three years ago, and I’m still slowly healing.
Most days, I still feel like I’m waiting — waiting for lockdown to be over, waiting for this pandemic to end, waiting to hug my friends again, waiting for a vaccine, waiting to see if God answers the prayer for a marriage that I’ve been praying for for years now, waiting for clarity over decisions to make, waiting for one of my dreams to come true.
I’ve never been good at waiting. When I was a kid at the amusement park, I’d opt out of the most popular rides because they had the longest line and I never wanted to wait. I never liked to wait for the best option if it took too long. I’d settle instead for an okay option because it came faster.
But what if God’s best for us sometimes comes with a long line of waiting? What if while I was waiting — for my mom to get better, for our church to be planted, for my healing — the waiting was part of what made me strong?
Isaiah 40:31 says, “They who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” (My emphasis)
What if, when I’m waiting for Jesus, He is actually making me stronger?
What if, in the waiting rooms, God is renewing my strength? Giving me abiding peace and deep trust in my Savior?
What if — as I pray over and over and over and over again, day after day, month after month, year after year, decade after decade — the Spirit is empowering me to move into deeper trust, to mount up like an eagle, to run and not grow weary, to walk and not get tired?
Not on my own, but through Jesus. With Jesus. Because of Jesus.
There are so many questions I don’t have the answers to. I don’t know whom I’ll marry or if I’ll marry at all. I don’t know when the pandemic will be over or what life will look like after it ends.
But I do know that when we trust in Jesus, when we wait on Him, when we follow His lead to surrender everything — our dreams, our finances, our jobs, our relationships — He gives us His strength.
Just like an eagle, I’m empowered — to walk, to run, to soar.
That’s what happens when we wait.Leave a Comment
Thank you. Waiting—oh, how challenging it is to wait. But, oh how wonderful it is to wait in and upon the Lord. Thank you Jesus for renewing my strength. Thank you Jesus for your peace, mercy, and grace.
Ann Woleben says
When I read your post, I couldn’t help but think of the adage “Good things come to those who wait.” Waiting is so hard, especially for some of our prayers to be answered. My mom always said, “In His time…not ours.” May His blessings come to you after waiting.
Thank you! Exactly what I needed. Praying for you too.
I think waiting is one of the hardest challenges I face. Patience may be a virtue but it does not come easily. It challenges my trust that in the end, God will hear me. I know I need to work on my faith in God. This past year has certainly put this in perspective.
Nancy Peters says
Encouraging words to start the day! I have a card with Isaiah 40:31 that sits on my nightstand. When Covid hit last year I was diagnosed with ‘ALL’ Leukemia. Through the powerful prayers of loving friends Jesus carried me and healed me. I have also been blessed with a wonderful medical team. My husband’s care and support has been amazing. But now I am having a lot of difficulty with my Leukemia maintenance plan. It has been started and stopped twice because of the side effects I am experiencing. Praying for God’s strength, hope and peace fills me, blesses me and keeps me going.
Susan Ashcraft says
Praying for you, Nancy, that God’s extraordinary strength, hope and peace will fill you and sustain you throughout each day.
Nancy, I’m going to start praying with you. Right now. Today. God is the Great Physician. Blessings and peace to you.
Beth Williams says
Please send your healing touch to Nancy. Take away the side effects & give her strength, hope & peace to soar like wings on an Eagle. Help her husband to continue caring for & supporting her. Bless this family in any way they need. AMEN!
Aliza, this is lovely. Thank you for sharing your insight.
Absolutely, Aliza. I’m pursuing studies in spiritual formation and in the course for this semester we are examining soul-shaping practices, sometimes known as the spiritual disciplines. We were to choose one discipline to practice over the duration of the course. Well, imagine my surprise when God told me that the discipline I was to practice was “waiting”. What…? I didn’t even *know* that “waiting” was one of the spiritual disciplines. I’m discovering that I am *very* impatient. I think this is why God has highlighted this for me. I need to learn patience. And in the process, learn other things about God as well. He gently transforms us as we ‘wait’ for him. Blessings, fellow Canuck!
michelle stiffler says
Everything I’ve read this week – wait, wait, wait. Sigh. Patience, endurance, and the slow virtues are so exposing. But we get through the waiting by encouraging each other through it. You encouraged me today, Aliza!
Lovely, post to remind us Whose we are and Who gives us our srength! As you mentioned we are all weary of this pandemic, wanting to hug our friends and family, but, we wait until it’s safe. I believe as Christians, God has given us this strength in this time and renews it when we ask in times of weakness.
I will pray for your continued healing and also for Nancy’s healing from leukemia.
Janet Williams says
“But I do know that when we trust in Jesus, when we wait on Him, when we follow His lead to surrender everything — our dreams, our finances, our jobs, our relationships — He gives us His strength”
Thank you Aliza
Dawn Ferguson-Little says
Aliza thank you for what you wrote. It has helped me so much. But I find sometimes. God has you wait. Especially at times to see how strong your faith is in him. How much you trust him. But God might not answer you in the way you want. Or in the time you want. If you been asking for something or praying for it a long time. You wonder were God is. Did he hear my prayer. Then start asking is my prayer not answered. The answer is yes God did hear your prayer. You have to then say to yourself God knows what he is doing and he knows what is best. But the waiting can be hard. I am not ppopular never have been. I never have had many friends all my life. Not even at school. l don’t want to be popular never want to be. But glad I am saved. I am the only in my family saved along with my Husband. I would never want to. I don’t have many friends. Two of my friends live 86 miles away from me. They did when their late Dad was as Minister live in the same town as me only 12 miles away from me. I have one other friend she so lovely too but busy with her work and other things. I don’t see her that often. I don’t get down about any of it. But I have said to God at times. I like one other friends that believes in Jesus. So as we can meet up and go for walks together and pray together for the things God would put on our minds for us to pray for. But it has never happened. I prayed once or twice a long time ago and left it in God’s hands. But nothing has come of it. But I just say to myself maybe I meant to be on my own. Just with my Husband. Him going to work. He more of person for staying at home when finished work. So I don’t complain as I got alot to thank God for. When I do see my other friends that lives down here plus the ones that live 86 miles away. It not that often. We have wonderful catch up time. They are all saved. I am so grateful on to God for everything he blesses me with. Like everyday I wake up to enjoy another day in his beautiful world that he made. That I can walk and do all the things can I do. When there are so many people alot worse of. I have a husband that is saved and loves me. Even if he not one for doing alot of things. I would like. I am thank full I still have a husband. As many people don’t. You hear of Marriages breaking up for what ever reason. That is sad. Kids get hurt when things like that happens if they have kids. I have no kids not brave enough to have any. I do love them. I love my sister’s kids. Was a Registered Childminder for 19 years. So we have to sender everything into the hands of Jesus. Know he knows what he doing best. Especially with me and me wanting another friend one who was follower of Jesus. Maybe God knew best and said no for a reason. Said Dawn yes you might want one to go on walks together and pray together about things. You want me to lay on your hearts. But God said no for the reason. I believe it is Dawn would not be good for me for the time being for you to have another friend. I believe God want me to pray for things on my own and what I am doing. Just seeing the friends you have when you do. Instant it so true. God always knows best what is best for us. Better than we know ourselves. So it is best to listen to God. Thank you for today’s reading. Love it Dawn Ferguson-Little Xx
Beautiful message Aliza, thank-you for sharing with us.
Blessings to all,
Beth Williams says
I am super impatient. Seems like all I do is wait, wait, wait. But I’ve learned that in the waiting God is working on & in me. The old adage “good things come to those who wait” is true. I prayed for roughly 4 years for a husband. Someone who would be there for me when my parents medical issues got worse. God heard those prayers & finally answered them in His perfect timing. Three years after we married my trials began. It was a long 12 year journey including in-laws. In those trials my faith & trust muscles were grown immensely. Now waiting doesn’t seem as bad. I’m still impatient but understand the growth happening inside me.
Praying for you in all areas of your life! ((((((Hugs))))))
Thank you so much. This was such a blessing to me today. Just what I needed to hear.
This was so timely. I’m currently in a waiting period but starting to see the why in all of it as I spend time with God. One day I’ll be sharing my story and talking about how grateful I am for “that time I waited”