Tuesday, 9 July 2013
I’ll admit, I’m the kind of girl who LOVES instant gratification. I might even have to admit most times I feel like I NEED it too.
Waiting makes me anxious. It means I’m not in control. I have to rely on someone else to complete a task when I’d much rather take care of it myself so it could just be done already! Not knowing how something will turn out, or if I’ll get what I was hoping for makes me crazy.
Just last month I had a period of waiting that took it’s toll on me mentally. We’d applied for Mariah to get into a Pre-K program in our school district. It would be 5 half days a week for free. I didn’t learn about it until after the first application deadline so we were on two waiting lists hoping a spot might open up. You see, my four year old has been begging to go to Kindergarten and she’s already reading, so I just knew she needed to get into Pre-K. I prayed and prayed something would open up for her. It would also make my life so much better to have a regular schedule and to have bus pick up and drop off.
Then we got a letter from the placement office. Her schools’ waiting lists were still full, but four new Pre-K programs had opened up. One of the schools was less than a mile from our house. I just knew this had to be the door God had opened for us – an answer to prayer! We toured the school and added itl to our list. We were told the lottery would be held “soon”.
I waited. I planned. I dreamed about how wonderful Pre-K would be for our life. I worried about the bus rides. I imagined how happy she’d be in a real school. I thought they might see her brilliance and jump her straight to Kindergarten. I prepared myself for telling her current teacher she’d be leaving. I tried to plan that we might not get in. It was all I could think about. I needed to know if she got in or not so we could prepare for the start of whatever school she’d be attending (that was back when I thought her preschool started a week before Pre-K). My mind couldn’t focus on anything else. I called the placement office twice before the lottery was held…which by the way was held a week after they’d told me it would. I was going insane not knowing. Not having control.
But I prayed. I prayed that God would have his way. We’d done all we could do. He knew what was best for our family and this time in our lives.
I called placement again. The lottery had come and gone. We didn’t get in. She was at the bottom of a waiting list of 70.
Tears in my eyes. My heart was so sad. But the first thought in my head, God knows what’s best. I shocked myself hearing this as the first thought. That kind of thinking hasn’t been typical for me for many years.
Already I’ve seen how staying at her current preschool is best for us. Another year of Christian education before we take on public school, a chance to be at the top of her class and help others, driving her is good for me because it forces me out of the house and to the YMCA.
* * * * * * *
That period of waiting made me realize a few things I’ve known in my head all my life, but hadn’t really known in my heart for quite awhile.
Waiting is good for us. We shouldn’t have our needs and wants met instantly all the time. If we always got what we wanted right away, it would turn us into spoiled, ungrateful little brats. Brats who would try to manipulate God or other people to meet our selfish needs. During the waiting we learn to trust others, be grateful for what we have, and seek God’s best for us instead of what we think is best.
God teaches us while we wait. It’s a time of preparation for our hearts. A time to learn to trust in him. When we realize we don’t have control, we start to see that God does. Sometimes I think he makes us wait just so we can learn something new about him. For me waiting brings me close to him, because I seek him more. I seek him for direction and I go to him to find peace.
Waiting shouldn’t bring anxiety. This is the hardest one for me to put into practice. While I wait I play out all the possible scenarios in hopes to have some sort of control of the situation. All that looking ahead to the future wears on me and takes me away from my present situation. The Bible tells us not to worry about tomorrow in Matthew 6:
31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.
34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
While the preschool/Pre-K waiting period was only two weeks long, I currently have two more periods of waiting going on right now. One won’t have an answer for many more months and the other several years. So I’m still learning to be content in the waiting. To focus on today and not dwell on how the future might play out. Some days are easier than others, but as I learn to trust God’s will and timing more, I know one day I’ll look back and think those months and years see how much I learned during the waiting.
I can’t wait! <<<See what I did there? I crack myself up!
* * *
Click on the image to view and save in full resolution. Printable up to 5×7.