grateful amazement

finding wonder…everywhere.

July 2010 – July 2015 :: A Cancer Survivor’s Retrospective :: Day Nineteen

on July 19, 2015

Waiting.

Who chooses that particular state of being on purpose?
Doesn’t it mostly feel foisted upon us when we feel least adequate to handle it with any kind of grace?
Isn’t it sorta maddening to find ourselves at the whim of some mysterious, unseen calendar?

But sometimes, no matter how we try to plan it, construct it, reason it, organize it, life is all about that Hurry Up And Wait thing.

And then there are other times when another message comes through loud and clear.
One that can be just as disconcerting as Holding-Pattern Waiting.
One that can be just as frightening, frustrating, and fatiguing as Just-Stay-Right-Here Waiting.
One that can be just as rock-in-your-shoe irritating as Don’t-Look-For-the-Map Waiting.

That other message?
It’s the one that tells you the wait is over.
That now is the time to act.
To move.
To risk.

It’s when that message is on repeat in my life that I engage in conversations with God that look an awful lot like this…
‘Um. I’m sure You don’t mean NOW. Right?!’
‘Yeah. About that. I think You have me confused with someone who is ready.’
‘Sorry. What was that? You want me to do something? But what? And how?’
‘Okay, but not until You make it clear that I have figured out the next step.’

Can you relate?

Here are a few things (in no particular order) I’m finding about being moved out of the Waiting into the Doing…
#1 – I don’t have to have all the answers right away.
#2 – Trusting the unfolding is especially important.
#3 – I’m going to get some of the Doing wrong.
#4 – There is no guarantee of success. Only guarantees of growth.
#5 – I have to let go of my fear about what other people will think.
#6 – The moving forward will not always be smooth. Or pretty.
#7 – I need to allow time for rest, even in the Doing.
#8 – Telling myself to breathe deep goes a long way in managing stress.
#9 – I can always ask for help.
#10 – There will be community built along the way.

We’ll all face periods of Waiting mixed with spaces of time when Doing is priority.
And we all have the incredibly power-filled choice to decide how we will show up in those times.
So, whether you’re in the Waiting or the Doing right now, take a big, deep breath and choose well.
I’m cheering you on.

~~~~~

December 30, 2012 (from my CaringBridge journal)
The last several days, if I’m honest, I feel like I’ve been held together with spit and feathers. In other words, tears have flooded my eyes frequently, my cheeks have been marked with many a tear track, my nose is a little red and raw from all the snot-blowing, and there have been some sleepless snippets of nighttime spent silently trying to quiet some not-so-comforting thoughts.

I tend not to be a cry-er. And I feel like I do at least a passable job of remembering to turn things over to God and not entertain too much worry at any given time. (Even if that means repeated turning over. *wink)

So this Spit and Feathers thing feels super uncomfortable to me. And I wonder if it’s just part and parcel of this thing we are all faced with from time to time: Waiting.

Here’s a sampling of what I’m learning, in the Waiting:

In the Waiting, I’m learning that it’s best just to let the tears come. (As long as I’m not in line at the store or somewhere else public. *gasp!) Stan is not scared away by them (at least not any more than any other man *wink, again) And the girls can learn that tears are not something to be embarrassed about, from their place on the sidelines. Plus, if I stuff the tears and keep them inside, they only serve to intensify that Coming-Apart-At-The-Seams feeling.

In the Waiting, I’m learning that it’s ok to cry out to God, asking for comfort. Life isn’t safe. And He never promised it would be. But He did promise to never leave or forsake me. Or you. And just because the sleepless snippets of nighttime are silent doesn’t mean God is.

In the Waiting, I’m learning that Spit and Feathers holding me together are enough for now. Because now isn’t forever. It’s just now. And, even though it’s not always comfortable, it is what it is. For now.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not crazy about waiting. And not just for tests and test results. I’m just not that good with it in any circumstance. It takes patience. And grace. And trust. And faith. And some level of creativity to occupy myself – to busy my mind and hands – so that worry doesn’t creep in and take over.

Patience. Grace. Trust. Faith. Creativity. All things I work on. All things I’d like to say I’ve mastered. Ultimately, all things I desperately need more of.

As 2012 comes to a close and the New Year peeks – bright, shiny, and full-of-promise – around the corner, I’m hanging on to as many of God’s promises as I can get my hands (and heart) around. Mostly the one about hope and a future (Jer 29:10-12 and Prov 23:18). And the one about all things working together for good (Rom 8:28). But He’s lead me to a lot more in the last couple days, too. Good stuff.

Happy, happy New Year to you and all of yours. As it arrives and unfolds, may you find in each day gifts and blessings and promises kept from the One who loves you, holds you, guides you, and sustains you. In the Waiting, and otherwise. *smile

If you spend your whole life waiting for the storm, you’ll never enjoy the sunshine. ~ Morris West

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