It feels like everyone I know is in a season of waiting. Waiting on a baby, waiting for a pay raise, waiting for Mr. Right, and the list goes on. I am no stranger to the waiting game. If I am not careful, I find myself stagnant in my current season looking forward to the next. Only to find that I wake up one day and realize I’m in that “next season,” but I am already waiting for the next. Oh, the cycle. This got me thinking about my marriage and whether I am just waiting in this season thinking I’ll be more satisfied in the next. Waiting for our communication to improve, waiting for us to agree on financial goals, coasting till he gets that new job and we are closer to a support system. It is a slippery slope and it happens fast.
See, when we married for the second time, I made a commitment to myself that I would be intentional about growing my marriage in every season. This is something I didn’t prioritize our first go around. We are currently in year two of the “hurry up and wait” game with his career, so it’s difficult to make any long-term plans or investments. A few months back I found myself so frustrated about my inability to make plans for the upcoming spring and summer because we didn’t know whether we would be relocated by then. We were waiting. It put me in a sour mood with my kids and I distanced myself from my husband. I was quick to get mouthy and even quicker to list all the things I was irritated about.
What makes it even worse is that my attitude didn’t just affect me, it spilled over into my marriage. Silence took the place of thoughtful conversation; time together was replaced with a list of unnecessary to-do’s. He was stressed, quiet and withdrawn. Then one night, tossing and turning in bed, it hit me how ungratefully I was living. Instead of seeing all that our current home and state had blessed us with, I was blinded by the fact that I wanted us to hurry up and move. I wasn’t thanking God for the dear friendships I had made and the places that have made this feel like a home. I had convinced myself that our next destination would somehow give us a bigger, grander life. I most certainly wasn’t singing praises that my husband had a job and the able body to do it so well. Days ran together and we found ourselves coexisting. We weren’t satisfied but we convinced ourselves that when we got where we were going that would all change. We had let life distract us from one another; insisting better days are ahead so it was okay not to appreciate the ones we were in. The bottom line is, we weren’t waiting well together.
Am I the only one who does this? So, what would it look like if the two of us didn’t just “wait”? What if we lived right in the midst of this season, and let God use this time to mold us, shape us and prepare us? While I think it is great to look forward to all that God has in store for your life and marriage, I also think it is important to let him grow you right where you are, in your today, in this season together. I want to live with both hopeful anticipation and intentional gratitude. It hit home when my pastor preached a sermon about a “waiting season not being a wasted season.” (I love when God does that.) Our God doesn’t make mistakes. His timing is so thoughtfully laid out that when the seasons change and time comes to pass I always look back and thank Him for the unanswered prayers. As a wife, I want to be an encouragement to my husband as we wait. I want to see our marriage thrive as God uses this time to grow us even closer together. Most importantly, I want our marriage to point people to Him.
I’m not sure what you are waiting through or who you are waiting on, but I know that your time is not wasted. I am sure that you haven’t been forgotten and I am confident in the author of your story. My prayer for us is that we wait with a sure and hopeful spirit while we make ourselves available for God to use us here and now.