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How Not to Waste the Waiting

by Dorothy Camak

Rory Gilmore, a character in the TV show “Gilmore Girls,” taught me that it is vital to always carry a book with you. You never know when you may find yourself in a situation or place where you need to pass the time while you wait. So, on most days, depending on the size of my purse, which depends on my outfit choice, I have a book in tow. (It may not be Atlas Shrugged or Les Miserables, but it is a book … with words … mostly.)

More often than I would like to admit, I find myself wasting my waiting. Just in case I miss something, I better check every social media outlet 12 times before resorting to actually reading my book.

Waiting is an opportunity for real growth and character development. Every moment of every day is from God, so why do we so often wish it away, anxiously awaiting the next thing? We become so preoccupied with what is next, that we ignore the very precious moment we are in. That is an exhausting way to live. We are all always waiting for something. Instead of gritting our teeth and bearing it, how about we “be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy” (Colossians 1:11, ESV)?

Here’s how not to waste the waiting:

1. Don’t get stuck.

“We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised” (Hebrews 6:12, NIV). So there is something you are waiting for that is beyond your control. You can let it paralyze you, or you can let it move you. You may not be able to control or change the circumstances you are in, but you do not have to put the rest of your life on hold. Ask God what you can do presently; then move where you can move. This will propel you forward.

2. Refocus. 

Sometimes all it takes is a new perspective. Think outside of your own waiting and observe the waiting of those around you. Even more, remind yourself that God’s plan is so much grander and vast than you could ever imagine. Ask Him to redirect your heart.

So often we turn God into a genie with our prayers being more like wishes He should grant us. How cheap! Instead, let’s ask Him to change our selfish hearts. As we delight in Him and His ways, our own wants are shifted. In turn, the famous verse will ring true: “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4, ESV).

3. Practice gratitude.  

Thankfulness leads to contentment. It is as simple as that, sweet friends. “A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones” (Proverbs 17:22, ESV).

4. Abide.  

God desires to be in relationship with us. And a good relationship means there is communication. Talk to Him. And let Him talk to you. He has given us His Book! His holy, precious words. “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psalm 119:105, ESV).

I want to wait well.  My prayer is that you and I may soak up His promises as we wait. Let’s choose to trust in His truths from the greatest Book with the greatest story ever told.

Dorothy Camak lives in Greenville, S.C. She enjoys running, often while listening to the weekly Boundless podcast.  

If you would like to contribute a post to the Boundless blog, see “Writers Wanted” for more details.


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