Jen’s Gem: God’s blessings are always worth the wait.
This week, I received a second offer on my house. While it was light years better than the first, it was still far below my asking price. The potential buyer sweetened the deal by offering to rent my home to me until I found my new place. Rent my own home.
I spent about thirty minutes running the offer through an Excel spreadsheet. If this offer, then what? If that offer, then what? By the time I went to sleep that evening, I wasn’t sure what I’d do but I prayed fervently that by morning I’d have an answer.
I woke up earlier than usual and a number was in my head. I had peace about it so I shared it with my realtor as a counter-offer. Their counter was still too low. I declined it. With only a few weeks left for my house to remain on the market, the clock is ticking. Additionally, given that none of the new places I’ve looked at will meet all of our needs, that same clock is also ticking for a new place to become available.
Lots of ticking clocks. Lots of waiting.
We spend most of our lives waiting, don’t we? One study noted that collectively, humans spend about 37 billion hours waiting in lines. Isn’t that crazy? We wait in traffic. We wait at the grocery store. We wait on hold for customer service. Since we spend most of our lives waiting, is it a worthwhile exercise to rethink how we spend this time?
When you’re stuck in a traffic jam, do you lament about how long it’s going to take you to get to your destination? Or do you use the time to listen to music or an audiobook?
When you’re on hold with customer service, do you fester in frustration and anger? Or do you multi-task and use this time to pay bills or respond to emails?
The time we spend waiting plus the time we spend living life is just over 700,000 hours for a person who lives to be about 80 years old. If a third of that is spent sleeping and a fair amount of time waiting for something, that doesn’t leave a lot of time left for living our best lives.
Thousands of years ago, the Israelites did a lot of waiting. They waited for a deliverer to save them from bondage. Then they waited to travel to the Promised Land. A forty day trip took them forty years because they were not good “waiters.” Instead of trusting God and obeying His commandments, they chose to whine and complain about their circumstances. They chose to disobey God and worship idols. They chose to trash their leader, Moses, and make their own laws.
How could God bless them with a land flowing with milk and honey when all they did was complain on the way to it? How could He fulfill His promises to them if they disobeyed His commandments? As a parent, I can tell you that when my kids acted in this manner, the last thing I wanted to do was to reward them. I expected them to do as they were told and that obedience, along with a good attitude, would get them their just reward.
God, as our heavenly Father, is the same way. It’s evident time and time again in the Bible. Abraham and Sarah did not have a child at the ripe old age of nearly 100 by dissing God 24/7, hating others, or holding on to grudges. David did not become a man after God’s own heart by whining and complaining about how long it took for him to be king.
We often wonder why we are not getting the blessings we think we deserve. We may even think God is purposefully withholding them from us. But that’s not who He is. If you want to see someone who has mastered this waiting game, it’s God. He has spent a k-zillion years waiting.
- He waited for Moses to get up the gumption to confront Pharaoh.
- He waited for 40 years for the Israelites to get their act together.
- He has waited for thousands and thousands of years for His children to seek Him out and get to know Him so that He can shower His blessings on them.
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:19)
I can tell you with 100% certainty that God is not up in heaven getting angry and frustrated because He has to wait for us. He is steadfast in doing all He can to get our attention and begin a relationship with His children. He won’t ever give up. No matter how long He has to wait. Why? Because He loves us and His love endures forever. (Psalm 136)
You may very well be on the brink of something huge. A new job. A marriage proposal. A baby’s birth. How will you spend your time waiting? Will you remain grateful for all you have been given? Will you trust that God will do as He says He will do? Or will you spend your time on hold moaning and groaning?
This week, I’d like to encourage you to be mindful of your wait time. Challenge yourself to do something completely different with it. You are on the brink of something big. Don’t delay its delivery by being a bad waiter.