“I wanted fulfilment; instead, God repeated the promise.” Tanya Marlow
Sometimes I read words which prod the tenderest part of me; and these took my breath away.
When I have so desperately railed at God because I’m waiting not so patiently, He has done just that. He has repeated the promise and shown me a little more of who He is.
Waiting is painful; the expectation and the longing, the fear and apprehension.
So often in my life I’ve raged at God because He isn’t doing what I want Him to do – only to look back years or months later and find that He did something in His timing which was far better than I could have imagined.
For example, I was desperate to drive, my Great Uncle had kindly given me his car when he could no longer use it and it was ready and waiting on my driveway – all I had to do was learn to drive the thing!
And it took a while.
I watched as countless friends passed their tests and drove around freely whilst I cadged lifts.
It took eighteen months and SEVEN driving tests before I got my license.
I was thinking about it the other week, and remembered that even though I could actually drive, my anxiety levels at the time meant I wouldn’t have been able to cope on the road I was actually too unwell to drive and I passed (well with an automatic license) one month before I went to university.
It’s a tiny example, but I remember getting so frustrated as I took test after test; had the same examiner three times which put me in a tailspin and I thought I’d never ever get there.
It happen right before I gave up and actually taught me a great deal about persistence and patience (well I’m still impatient – but I’m a lot more persistent!)
God rarely works to our timeline because His timeline sits in the context of eternity.
I expect Moses thought he’d see the promised land before his death – not after it.
I expect Abraham and Sarah thought the child they’d been promised would have happened years before they were in their 90s! But God doesn’t always promise what we want Him to – He promises us Himself first – His presence.
Because however long we wait; God has been waiting for us to return to Him.
I wonder if in the waiting, we seek God in ways that we couldn’t with instant gratification?
This post was inspired by Tanya Marlow’s brilliant new book, “Those Who Wait”, you can order it on Amazon, Waterstones or Wordery. It is part of the synchroblog on waiting, to celebrate the release of Those Who Wait: Finding God in Disappointment, Doubt and Delay by Tanya Marlow – out now. See more here and link up to the synchroblog here.’