Okay so maybe it’s not the life you had planned, the glitter in the air never quite falls over yourself, and the freshly paved, smooth road you traveled on ended up turning into gravel and mud somewhere along the way. Maybe the strong sound of your footsteps turned into the delicate tip-toeing around the fear, and the sure voice of confidence now whispers a tale of suffered disappointments. And maybe the sun rises bright over yonder, but every time you begin to run for it, it turns into a fading sunset.
Perhaps your dreams are put on hold, yet again, which turns your current story into more of a dreaded, assigned school book than a New York Times best seller. Maybe it’s the unclear career direction, the once strong relationship wearing thin, the loss of one beloved, or the desperation for a supportive income. Or the thorn in your side that hurts, still, after all this time. Or maybe it’s a medical diagnosis that threatens to finish, and you know it all too well by just the intensity of the pain…I know this, all to well. Or it’s the need for refilling of the sucked out joy, the missing clarity in your much-too-big decision, or the unknown love you have wished for since you came into this world. And the inner voice saying please God, please is covered by the all too familiar, resounding wait.
And the word shakes around in your brain, bumping into your confidence, and wearing down your hope. Then it’s still? still?! I need a breakthrough Lord, before my body wastes away in this waiting game.
All of this pleading and this desperation–well you could fill plenty of pages with your inquiries of the Lord, and sometimes you do… And you’re becoming David in the midst of his fleeing from Saul, begging God to hear the words stemmed from your exhaustion, hurt and confusion. He was frightened and fearing, and down for the count, but David kept going back to the Lord. He waited and waited for this threat to rise, but still he was pursued by his enemies. And the animosity of his pursuers and the anguish of his heart, well it only pushed him more towards Christ, for though his sunrise hadn’t yet come, he still sought the only Light he knew.
But in this waiting all through David’s story…this is where we see the character of God. Because though David questions and moans with grief, he does it to God. He keeps going back to Him.
Where David laments to His Lord, there he always learns of His goodness.
The psalms hold full the moans of David in his trial, but also his recounts of the Lord’s good character, especially in face of the evil around him. Though he must endure, he can do so with the One who understands.
And all this waiting (this staying where one is) can be done without fear because we can realize just where it is we must stay. It is in His arms. If there ever was a place to stay, to take up residence, or to make a home, it is in His arms.
Though this act of waiting is more likely seen as a holding back, a standing by, a postponing, or delaying, how easily we forget that each of these actions can be finished with an “until the Lord’s perfect plan comes to be.” So maybe it is in the waiting that our very dreams and plans are being upstaged by even better dreams and plans, far worth the wait–and why reach for the imperfect now when you could wait for the perfect later?
Maybe we’re all Davids fleeing from our Sauls, our fears and our hurts. But we can, like David, direct our wandering hearts to the One who created them and the One who can bring all comfort. Because in our waiting for His perfect plan, we can be best prepared for the big reveal by what we are focusing on now. If we too, like David, keep returning to our Creator, then perhaps we too can learn just how good His character is.
…Because it’s often during the waiting where God whispers “stay where you are” so we can better learn the rhythms of His grace and the gravity of His love before moving on.
And I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to miss that lesson.