Does life ever feel like it has a loading bar? You wait and wait and wait for something to happen or take place in which you are chosen for the role that is your calling, your destiny, your purpose for being placed on this earth; but life just remains normal and slow and boring. You right click and left click and move the mouse around in hopes of speeding up the process, but nothing seems to happen.
This is the biggest issue I deal with in my life. I’m one that likes things to happen NOW! I’m the first one to start doing the dishes so that cleanup is complete, the first one finished eating at the restaurant and tapping my foot in impatience at the slow eaters, the first one to plan a party so that there is something fun going on at all times. By now, I had planned to be in the remote jungles of a cannibalistic island saving hundreds of lives, or working in a children’s hospital making the last moments of dying kids’ lives special, perhaps rescuing girls from Asian brothels, and maybe dying a heroic death in a leper colony where I sacrificed my life for others. But here I am…working for the family business, cleaning house, washing clothes, and doing dishes. Seriously?! This can’t be what God intended for me; I’m supposed to be a warrior woman for Jesus and a daughter of the King going into all the ends of the earth on assignments from Heaven.
When I pour out my heart in frustration to my parents, my father always reminds me that the waiting time is meant for everyone. The waiting time is always the longest.
Moses was a runaway hiding in the wilderness tending sheep for forty years before his “big moment” came. David spent most of his life running from death at the hands of a maniac king and then later his own son. Joseph was stuck in prison probably feeling pretty alone and forgotten before he became the right-hand man of Pharaoh. Did you ever think about how little we actually know of Daniel, Esther, and Ruth’s lives? That’s because most of it was spent in normality, full of little every day moments and occurrences.
Am I saying that each one of us will have a huge occurrence in our life when suddenly Heaven breaks open and illuminates us as the key to the moment? No, most of us will never be Billy Graham whose sermons have been heard all over the world or Gladys Alward who led almost a hundred children across mountains fighting starvation and hiding from soldiers. We may reach the end of our lives and wonder what our “big” moment actually was and what our purpose was supposed to be.
That’s because God views things differently than we do. I think He smiles just as much when He sees a mother in prayer for her children as He does when He sees a missionary in Africa living in tribal conditions.
It’s all about using each day as your “big” moment, seeing each boring task as a way to glorify the King, and finding purpose in the fact that we are simply called to love God, love others, and let our light shine- which can be done anywhere at anytime. Maybe God is calling you one day to do something “exceptional” in human terms, but the way you are using your waiting time now is key on how you do when the curtain opens and the spotlight falls on you. David used his fleeing time to grow closer to God and build him into the “man after God’s own heart”, Moses used his wilderness time as a character building experience to prepare him for what he would face in the wilderness with thousands of people, and Joseph used his waiting time to establish his faith and convictions. Without David’s relationship with God, his kingdom would not have been renowned and revered. He may have never had the privilege to be the great——great——great—(and however many more greats)—–grandfather of Jesus. Without Moses’ preparation he may have fell apart and withered under the pressure, and the Israelites would have never reached the Promised Land. Without Joseph’s morals, he would have given in to Potiphar’s wife and the story would have turned out a lot differently. Sometimes it would be good for us to see how things would be if people would have not used their waiting time to its fullest potential.
Perhaps it is as simple as smiling at the cashier and wishing her a merry Christmas, letting another person go first in line, spending more time in prayer, saying no to the tempting pop-up that magically appears on the screen, or taking the time to listen to what your children are going through right now.
One of my absolute favorite characters from the Lord of the Rings is Eowyn. She is strong and determined, the daughter of a king, ready to give her very life to protect the kingdom and the ones she loves. Her heart despairs when she is told that she dare not ride with the men into battle. Aragorn asks her, “What do you fear, lady?” She replies, “A cage. To stay behind bars, until use and old age accept them, and all chance of doing great deeds is gone beyond recall or desire.” Often we feel like that (at least I speak for myself that I do). I’m so ready to wield my sword and fight against the darkness and evil of this world. To think of living each day just sitting in the castle as I watch others go into battle, is almost unbearable. To Eowyn it was unbearable, and she disguised herself to sneak along and defend her land. After nearly dying, she realized that she was to focused on the “big” moment, on fame and recognition and said, “I will be a shieldmaiden no longer, nor vie with the great riders, nor take joy only in the songs of slaying. I will be a healer, and love all things that grow and are not barren.” And in this new change, she is found more beautiful than before.
We are called as Christians to put on the whole armor of God and be warriors for the spiritual Kingdom, but we are also called to love, cherish, heal, and listen. No, we won’t always be out on the battlefield; but neither do we have to sit aimlessly in the castle. There are wounds to bandage, hopeless soldiers to encourage, children to feed, and scared citizens to comfort. Those are the waiting things…and those sometimes are the most beautiful!