Waiting is the hardest. Honestly, I’ve never been good at being patient or waiting for anything. Waiting puts me in a funk and I’ve been in a full-on seasonal fog of it for weeks now.
While everyone else was going back to school or work, beginning new adventures and traveling, I was spinning my wheels trying to figure out why in the world I was stuck. Drivers, control freaks, and doers don’t know what to do with waiting. We’re all about making things happen and we get downright grumpy and fit-to-be-tied when life sputters to a stop and we can’t get the motor going again. Sitting in neutral doesn’t feel productive.
That’s where I’ve been since the beginning of August. Neutralized. Stuck. Grumpy.
I started feeling left behind. “Everyone else is doing something,” I finally said to Daniel. As we hiked through the woods of Shades State Park, I listed all the people I know who are out there doing things–connecting, writing, speaking, leading, inspiring, relating–things I wish I was doing. “Look, I don’t want to take away from them. I’m genuinely happy for _______ , but when will it be my turn?” Daniel listened like he always does and gently said, “But, honey, you’re just a few weeks away from going again. All you have to do is wait.”
Wait? But, waiting is the hardest…for me. With a heavy sigh and an extra-large shoulder shrug, I turned away from my truth teller and kept moving on the trail. As the leaves crunched under my feet I began to sulk again, re-examining every word of the previous conversation, when suddenly a picture came to mind of an airport with planes lined up for miles waiting to take off. What might have seemed like a further illustration of frustration in waiting was actually a huge lesson in patience, trust and timing.
You see, the picture was really about the Controller. While I obsessed about the starting time of my own journey, the Controller studied things from a higher and broader perspective where many other eager travelers were coming and going. He knew the destinations of each plane and was fully aware of the schedule; however, since only He knew the complete overview of air traffic, each one of us would have to wait until the appropriate time to be given the go ahead to hit the runway at speed and take off.
We might sit on the tarmac and grumble about time wasted or inconveniences we endure, but delays rarely if ever prevent us from getting exactly where we intend to go. Waiting sometimes is simply a product of someone else going first.
For now I’m waiting and trusting and doing my best to remember that just because someone else goes before me doesn’t mean my adventure got cancelled.
I’m still not patient. There’s a line in Evan Almighty that says, “If somebody prays for patience, do you think God gives them patience or do you think He gives them an opportunity to be patient?” It looks like this is another awesome opportunity for me to grow.