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Friday, February 10, 2017

How to Wait

My husband and I have been through a testing allowed by the Lord. I won’t go into the details of that but I will share with you some truths I have learned that I think are pretty much universal to all of us when we are at the end of ourselves with no resolution in sight. 

- we tend to  pray more frequently and with more fervency when undergoing hardship. This is a good thing. Go with that tendency.

- put yourself into a quiet, private place where you can take time to be completely honest with God. Admit your failures, poor choices, blind spots, overt disobedience — everything to Him. You may as well because He has seen it all in us. And even though He is already aware of our sins, we need to humble ourselves to admit to Him and to ourselves that we have messed up. this is important

- even if we can’t find anything we have done wrong to cause this problem, there will be mistakes in other areas of our lives that need to be addressed. If nothing more than to say you’ve covered all the bases, deal with all transgressions that have not been previously brought before the Lord. There is no need to dig up what has been taken care of before in His Presence, but be honest in looking to see if there is something, anything that needs to be confessed with sincere repentance.

- cry out for His forgiveness and mercy. He created us with the desire to be like Jesus, so when we have missed the mark, we have gone against His original design for us and the result will be disturbances in our spirit. this is important


- accept that He has forgiven you because He has. We don’t deserve that forgiveness but it’s there. Accept it. If we are too proud to accept His forgiveness then we will be stuck until we do.

- forgive yourself. Other people may never forgive us and we actually can live with that (it’s a matter between them and God), but we must forgive ourselves. If need be, say this to yourself, “I’ve missed the mark but I see that now and from here on out I’ll work to get it right.” I love the verse in Lamentations telling us God’s mercies are new every morning. They are new every moment! He gives us a fresh start!

- sit quietly and just listen in your spirit to see if God is telling you something, perhaps something new you had not considered before, or maybe something He’s been telling you many times in many ways that you may have disregarded. During that  quiet time before Him, take out that repeating message to examine it for any possibility of truth it may hold. how often has this been true for me

- do what you are supposed to be doing, the next thing that needs to be done. Fold the laundry, empty the dishwasher, wash the car, take the kids to school, whatever is waiting for you to do, do it. Get your hands busy with something of value. Do it to the best of your ability. This is no time to be living near the edge of disobedience..

- understand that others are concerned for you and mean well even if their words grate on your nerves. It is the nature of love to try to be helpful, so give them credit for trying to be a comfort. Listen to what they say without arguing back or trying to defend yourself. Just listen and then thank them. Again in your private place, examine what they have said to see if there is any shred of truth that might be of help to you. as humbling as this is, this is often how God speaks to me

- be at peace with the sleepless nights. Those can be the best times to hear our Lord speaking to us. When everyone else is fast asleep and in your wakefulness you pad around the house  in your slippers, trying not to wake them — those times are actually a blessed invitation from the Lord to sit quietly with Him. Maybe read scripture or just snuggle up with a blanket on the couch and ask Him to speak to you. He may say something quite revealing, or He may say nothing and you may just drift into sleep — isn’t that a confirmation He has heard you and has given you enough peace to be able to nod off into rest? 

A few years ago I was injured in an accident. For months I had to depend on others to do for me some of the simplest things I always did for myself, and frankly, I preferred  my independence. But with my injuries, I was forced to rely on others. I simply had no choice. Being angry about it did no good for anybody. I had to learn to lay quietly in my chair while my husband and friends did the best they could to carry out my chores. 

That turned out to be an illustration to me of what trusting God looks like. There are circumstances where we are absolutely powerless to fix our problems. We have done all we know to do, sought all the counsel and instruction we know. We have hit a wall and have no choice but to slide down to the base of that wall and just wait to see what happens. 

Do that. Wait. Wait in silence. Stop the complaining and even the muttering under the breath. Wait in trust that God is and always has been working on our behalf. He has divine, omnipotent reasons for this circumstance and the seeming endless delay in the answers we need. Just wait and know He’s got us exactly where He wants us. Be at peace with that.


The problem will not last forever. The answer will come. Wait it out in trust and quietness of spirit. 

27 comments:

  1. Much truth here. Thanks for capturing your thoughts!

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  2. Beautiful, Barbara. I don't want to "lose" this post so am adding it to my list of inspirational posts. I should read it daily. 😶

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  3. Thank you Barbara...how right you are...I'm with Vee....I am saving this as well.

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  4. Good words Barbara. We have just had a sermon series at church called Stuck on Hold... when God is silent. One of the encouragements was to consider Job and even with all he suffered there in the midst of his suffering he declares, For I know my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth. Job 19:25. A comforting truth we heard is "Never doubt in darkness what God has taught you in the light" Most importantly is that even though we think God is silent He has spoken with Jesus and what Jesus has done for us. Blessings on you as you wait...

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    1. I can appreciate your pastor’s sermon series, “Stuck on Hold.” Haven’t we all been there?!! Blessings to you!

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  5. Hi Barbara, I am visiting via Vee's suggestion. I greatly appreciate you sharing these words today. They blessed me. Mildred in Georgia Wishing you a very nice Saturday.

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  6. What an excellent post, Barbara. I've pinned it and will save it as well. My hubby and I have been through trials too and can say these points you've made are spot on. We were blessed in that no matter how difficult things got, we were always able to sleep. But I loved your suggestions of what do do if one isn't able to sleep.

    Your point at the end, about waiting in silence. So good. Sometimes I will catch myself sighing about a certain situation, and I've come to realize that a sigh can be a sort of inaudible complaint. Not good. Another thing I've learned is that resenting a situation one is simply a lack of trust in God and His sovereignty.

    We must trust that God, who knows the end from the beginning, has a purpose in this -- and it is a good purpose. Jeremiah 29:11 has been an encouragement to me many times.

    Have you ever read the Elizabeth George book Finding God's Path Through Your Trials? I've been through the study (not just read the book!) several times and highly recommend it.

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    1. A sigh as an inaudible complaint -- yes, I know exactly what you mean. I will try to watch that one! (smile)

      I do like Elizabeth George. Thank you for the book recommendation. I've not read that one.

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  7. I'm visiting after seeing Vee's suggestion. This is a very wise and beautifully written post and I'll be saving it to reread again. Thank you for sharing these words and have a nice weekend!

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  8. I'm visiting from Vee's place this afternoon. This post is so meaningful to me as my daughter is struggling right now. I shall send this link to her.....thank you so much!

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Linda. I hope the post is of some help to your daughter. After we understand that all is a process, we tend to handle the hardships better.

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  9. I'm visiting thanks to Vee's encouragement to visit you on her blog today, and how thrilled I am to have met you! I must say, you have written a deeply moving and powerful post. You have spoken with assurance and knowing, and what a powerful testimony that you have shared. It reminds me of Catherine Marshall's experience in a sense too, coming to the end of yourself. Her book "Beyond Ourselves" is an awesome read.

    Whenever we are facing a difficult situation and trial, I always think of this verse: "For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth", and then I think, Lord, you must love me so much! And that brings a comfort, of sorts, in the midst of the difficulty.

    So happy to have met you today, and hope that we can get to know each other better in "blogland" Hugs to you today!

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    1. Thank you for reminding us of how the Lord chastens those He loves. Like you, I feel VERY loved!

      BTW, Beloved and I visited northern Idaho last summer and loved it. You live in a beautiful part of the country!

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  10. Wow, I needed to read this today. I'm visiting from Vee's and your post touched my heart.
    I just copied down your quote on Reality that's on your sidebar. I need to place that on my fridge. Happy Sunday!

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    1. Thank you for your kind comment -- you have encouraged me!

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  11. also visiting via Vee! wonderful truths here and the verse in your top right sidebar caught my eye because it's one of my life verses.
    Following! from ourcovenantfarmblog.wordpress.com not oursearskithome anymore...

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    1. Your comment has encouraged me. Thanks so much.

      Love your old brick home!

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  12. Ohhhh my goodness this has ministered to me today. Praying for you in your time of testing, grateful for your ministry to me in my own testing time!

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  13. Thank you, Linda, for this kind comment. These notes are still ministering to me. May the Lord bless you!

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    1. Thank you for your comment, Terri. I need this message every day... slow learner, perhaps?

      That new pup on your farm, Bryan -- HOW ABSOLUTELY ADORABLE!!!

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  15. i'm visiting from vee's blog .. & so thankful to have 'found' you. and this post.. i'll be re-reading and thinking on your words throughout the day and i'm certain the coming days. my husband and i have been faced with a terrible challenge for the past nearly 5 years (concerning our daughter). daily, hourly, moment by moment i'm giving it back to the One who holds my heart. for yes, HIS mercies are new every morning & every moment. blessings... ♥

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    1. Thank you, Sherry, for your comments and re-affirmation of God's mercies. We can never be reminded of Him too much.

      P.S. I love to wear pearls, too.

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  16. Popping over from Vee's blog to add a hearty amen to all you have said. It is very applicable -- both for me and particularly for someone I love dearly who has been plagued by fear over these past couple of years. We keep going over the fact that fear is not of God; His perfect love casts out fear. Yet, it continues to rear its ugly head. So much wisdom in the words you have shared. Thank you.

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  17. Barbara,
    This is a lovely, and convicting post. Thanks for sharing.

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