The Waiting Place

"And the chances are, then, that you’ll be in a Slump.

And when you’re in a Slump, you’re not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done.

You will come to a place where the streets are not marked. Some windows are lighted. But mostly they’re darked. A place you could sprain both your elbow and chin! Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in? How much can you lose? How much can you win?

And if you go in, should you turn left or right…or right-and-three-quarters? Or, maybe, not quite? Or go around back and sneak in from behind? Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find, for a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.

You can get so confused that you’ll start in to race down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space, headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.

The Waiting Place…for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane to go or the mail to come, or the rain to go or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or No or waiting for their hair to grow. Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite or waiting around for Friday night or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil, or a Better Break or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants or a wig with curls, or Another Chance. Everyone is just waiting.

No! That’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. You’ll find the bright places where Boom Bands are playing. With banner flip-flapping, once more you’ll ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready because you’re that kind of a guy!"

(excerpt from Dr. Seuss' "Oh, The Places You'll Go!")

I'm considering how much of the last year of our lives we have spent in The Waiting Place. This Waiting Place (waiting for a house to sell) is a smidgen different than the last Waiting Place (of waiting for a job), which I presume will be just a little different than the next Waiting Place.

And I'll be honest, I initially RAGE against The Waiting Place. First I organize it: there is a plan for how we will wait and how long we will wait, and the activities we will do while we wait. God usually thumps my plan over at some point.

I have to send up a praise and tell you that God has finally brought me to the peace that surpasses human understanding in my current Waiting Place. That is NOT me at all, but the work of the Spirit in my life. Sarah wants it mapped out, squared away, over and DONE, but the Spirit has brought some amazing grace AND peace into my life and led me to be still and wait.

My prayer in this time is to "redeem the time" -- may God use it for His good. Let us not squander our time of waiting twiddling our thumbs or raging at the circumstances of an unsold house (yes, you heard plenty of that last month) or spending energy beating the bushes for a buyer that simply isn't here now. I will spend this time in prayer that my life may be His, praying that I may hear His nudge of how best to honor Him in time of waiting.

I pray much for sweet Troy, too, in his new job and new town that he may be at peace since I think he's definitely got the short end of this deal without the support system that the kids and I have here.

I don't know WHY we are here: it may be for me, it may be for Troy, or the kids, or the buyer of this house, or the seller of the next house. I simply don't know. I simply know that I want to use this time to His glory.

One thing that brought me to this place is a song. I play it almost every day -- at least once if not 3 or 4 times -- in the car as my prayer. I had forgotten about it, but someone posted it on Facebook. The first time I heard this was a little over a year ago at a funeral.

Remember my friend Dana? She lost her beloved husband to cancer way too soon. I think he was 37. She spoke very eloquently at his funeral, and said that this song had allowed her to get through, then she played "While I'm Waiting" by John Waller (originally in the movie "Fireproof"). Then she sat down. Through a crowd of people, I could see Dana in her seat.

With tears streaking her gorgeous porcelain skin, she lifted her face and hands heavenward, and praised and worshipped to this song. Dana, as all people in grief, are now in a forever waiting place -- waiting to see their loved one. Remembering that moment has given me new resolve. If she, my beautiful, stubborn, strong friend can lift her hands in praise at her husband's funeral, then I can by golly buck up and lift my hands in praise waiting for a house to sell.

While I'm waiting...


Katherine said...

It's funny, because as I was reading this post I was thinking of that song & then I saw you posted it & I had suggested it to a friend awhile back. Such a great reminder!!

I have definitely played the waiting game several times over the last few years, and it is hard & challenging. Difficult to surrender control, to trust, to not map it all out & make something happen we are not ready for. I have learned that God's timing is so much better than mine & am slowly trying to learn to trust in that.

Praying continued peace & guidance as you guys wait & that our Father will continue to guide you into the next chapter.

I will praise you while I'm waiting, I will serve you while I am waiting...

Leah said...

Waiting waiting waiting...
patience patience patience...
peace peace peace...

That's my mantra and prayer these days. I'll pray it for you as well that god's encompassing love will continue to enable you wait in peace.

Roxanne said...

One of our elders makes this point through a question.

"How long do you have to be faithful?" The answer is, "Just today."

Just today. . .we have to because today is all we are given. And if God calls me home today, then tomorrow I won't have to be faithful, because my faith will have become sight.

How long do you have to wait? Just today.

You know I love ya. And also Dr. Seuss.

Scott F said...

We love you and Troy and are waiting with you. And we are waiting with Dana to see Brian again too. Thanks for sharing this.

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