Patience. It’s a beautiful concept. Really. But reality?! Nope. Hashtag: notmything. I get it. My mind says:
- “He’s in the waiting.”
- “His timing is perfect.”
- “Don’t rush anything.”
- “Trust God.”
- “His plans are good.”
My impatient inner self screams: “Well, just let me…..”
I swear it’s part of being a single mom. You’re the single point of accountability for your kids. If you fail, the family fails. That’s a lot of pressure, even with faith. As NASA once proclaimed: “Failure is not an option.”
I found out early in life that delays led to things not working out as I had planned. Things changed. Priorities shifted. Love ended. Wait. Whuh? Yeah. So love – true love, anyway – doesn’t end, but that immature, conditional kind of love certainly ends. Usually when things change. Ever so slightly. Or might change. Loss sucks. Period…. So, I learned to act swiftly to prevent the end from coming. (Strike one.)
Change is scary, but – if you embrace it and get ahead of it – that helps. You can keep poking at the embers of your situation to keep it alive. I embraced change, with the caveat that I was able to control said change, and that it happened quickly before anyone could settle in. In other words, I. Was. In. Charge. (Strike two.) #controlfreak
Constant movement keeps you from taking things for granted. You have to keep moving, keep adjusting, keep adapting. All in the name of being grateful. Use what you have. If anyone resists change, they clearly are not grateful. (Strike three.)
Over the past year or so, I am slowly (and sometimes with better results than at other times) learning the value of patience. If it’s something you want to last (friendships, habits, relationships, etc.), you have to put in the work and W.A.I.T. Painful, but necessary. You grow. Others grow. You all learn. You learn peace and patience because you realize you want these things to last a lifetime.
I’ve realized I am definitely NOT in control. Of anything. Anywhere. I’m along for the ride and I cannot enjoy the journey if I’m trying to control every aspect of it. Let go of the steering wheel, occasionally, amiga. Sheesh.
Finally, I’ve realized that you are grateful regardless of whether or not you are moving or stable. Giving thanks is a mindset. You don’t have to be “in front of the change”, or “off-guard”, or “shaken up” to be grateful. You just have to show up and give thanks. Simple, but true.
As I struggle with patience, I realize I have to trust God more and relinquish my control (or my illusion of control) in order to not take the reins during the waiting. Ironic that I need to put more trust OUTSIDE of myself in order to experience patience and peace, but it’s true. The Lord works everything for His good. Nothing is wasted. He uses it all, but I have to surrender first. If I hold control, I have to be IN control. I cannot be patient when I think I’m in control. That’s not how my mind works. Fortunately, our Lord realizes that people struggle and loves us anyway, right where we are, in whatever situation we have created.
Romans 12:12 (NKJV): 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer;