What to Do While You’re Waiting for Something Really Important

You may be waiting for a first child and the treatments aren’t working.  Or you may be waiting for the right person to spend the rest of your life with.  Or waiting for that perfect job and promotion.

I finished writing my first book a year ago.  Since then, I have been waiting for a publisher to tell me how fabulous it is…but all I’ve been getting are rejection letters. I have heard the publication process can take years, so I may be waiting for awhile!

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As the days turn into weeks and months, it’s so easy to get discouraged.  The repeated rejections make you want to hide and not put yourself out there again.  You wish people would stop asking how it’s going.  And you start to question what God is doing – or rather, not doing.  Maybe He doesn’t have a great plan for your life after all?

As difficult as it is, waiting is often God’s preparation for a great mission. And it is not wasted time! God is the Master Builder – and the best buildings (the ones that stand the test of time) require firm foundations. He is shaping precious vessels on the Potter’s wheel.  He is slowly transforming the caterpillar into a butterfly in ways that can’t be seen. He is carefully tending the soil so that the newly planted seed can sprout successfully. 

Don’t mistake the slow unfolding of a promise as rejection from God. 

Many cherished followers in the Bible experienced a period of waiting. Moses waited forty years in the desert before his burning bush assignment. David hid in caves for years before receiving his promised position in the palace. Abraham and Sarah waited until old age to bear the much-anticipated son. Joseph waited in a dungeon before ruling a nation. Even Jesus spent thirty years in privacy before He began His work.

The word wait means “to remain stationary in readiness or expectation,” “to look forward expectantly,” or “to be ready and available.” Another translation for wait actually means “to be braided together with.” Picture a trellis where a vine weaves itself into the supporting structure. The trellis provides security to the fragile vine so it can handle the weight of future fruit.

If you don’t learn to wait on the Lord, you will never get the strength of the Lord.  The Bible tells us:

    “The LORD longs to be gracious to you…Blessed are all who wait for Him!” Isaiah 30:18
     God “acts on behalf of those who wait for Him.” Isaiah 64:4
     Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.” Psalm 27:14
    “Those that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength…” Isaiah 40:31

What should you do while you’re waiting? 

The disciples returned to fishing when they weren’t sure what to do next.  Jesus had been crucified and they feared for their own safety.  They left Jerusalem and went back to fishing in Galilee.  That wasn’t what Jesus had in mind.  He asked them to face their fears and wait for the Holy Spirit back in Jerusalem.  Sitting in the safety of your comfort zone is not what He has in mind for you either.

Keep putting yourself out there.  Look for opportunities to grow and develop.  Stay alert and engaged so you can see how and where He is moving.  Make any necessary adjustments.  Invest time, energy, and resources in moving forward – one step at a time.  Ask Him to show you each next step. 

Blessed are those who don’t fall away when they don’t understand, when He doesn’t act, when there are obstacles, and when they feel deserted. Blessed are those who don’t give up when things are going wrong. Blessed are those who don’t pout when answers are delayed. Blessed are those who keep on believing when the night is long and black. Morning will come! Don’t give up too soon!

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10 Comments

  1. Karen says:

    Excellent thoughts Stefani, I totally understand your angst in waiting to be published. Right there in the middle with you! It’s hard to sit by and watch the days pass by since in our world waiting is equated with wasting time. But it comes down to trust and faith, doesn’t it. We have to believe what God says about working out our situation instead of what seems to be the truth from our vantage point. Thanks for pulling together the verses. writing them down for later.

  2. Tanya Logan says:

    Hi Stefanie, I’m right there with you — except an editor basically told me my book had no premise, and I didn’t know how to write! Fortunately, it wasn’t my first, it was my 4th book plus I had tons of news columns etc behind me. Otherwise I probably would have thrown in the towel..
    As long as we keep asking Him and remaining open to ideas, the right path opens up. For me it was self-publishing and waiting over a year to move to FL where people don’t just want to read my book — they like for me to come and teach it.
    I wish you all the best. Thanks much for this post.

  3. Paul Smith says:

    I wasn’t so much waiting as I was oozing through life, when I was attacked by the, “Flesh eating disease, Necrotizing Fasciitis.” I learned that Our Lord is at work all of the time in Your life, even when You are running from Him. .When You are waiting, He is at work in You, so what should You do?? The next thing, then the nest thing as well as You can. Always expecting Him to say NOW.

  4. Timothy Bamigboye says:

    Waiting is one of the hardest thing to especially when it seems one is losing out and everyone is backing out. Someone rightly remarks that it is easier to run than to wait. It takes the grace of God to wait. I identify with you about this message. The most assured thing us that those who wait for God shall never be put to shame. The message is so comforting. You are blessed.

  5. Angeline says:

    Love this article.Thank you for writing this. I have been in this waiting cycle a number of times. The waiting part is excruciating painful at times, but it’s worth it. My question is how do we know if we are on the right path? Is it a gut feeling ?

  6. Will be sincerely praying for God to open the right door so that your writing will be published..

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