Not Waiting Well

Indeed, none who wait for you shall be put to shame…
— Psalm 25:3

“I’m tired of watching you suffer.” These are words my husband spoke to me with tears fighting both of our eyes.

I am goal and success driven, a taskmaster, with pictures in my mind of what certain things should look like when I have “arrived.” Rejection is not my normal modus operandi, laughing at the future with worries well tucked and stuffed away within the anxious lump in my throat much more so. Although I would scoff at many who look at their wounds while having expected something much different as foolish due to this theology I claim to know, I have found myself likewise catechized by my culture and believing in it, so much so that I am tossed to and fro.

I followed hard after what I thought You had called me to, and for what? This shame, these rejections, the constant waiting I feel in my bones. I was prepared for the, “where you go, I go,” but not the, “where you stay, I stay,” especially if it meant laboring in the same.

I have mistaken once more my circumstances as a measure for whether or not I have received the promised life abundant. I have very literally bought into the lies of the work-hard American dream that means that I get exactly what I want at the end of it. Hidden underneath the newly pronounced title of “Master of Divinity” meant a shrouded self-glory that only decreasing can cure.

In all my religious attempts to shake the dust off of what has only felt like failure, the word I hear is wait.

I have been carrying pieces of shame like a heavy backpack, jam-packed full of things that I don’t even need to have with me. Where did we have it taught to us that if (when) we are hurting, suffering, wounded, in the waiting, that we are somehow missing out on what God actually has for us? Where did we have it told to us that if we simply put a positive spin, or gave a good pep-talk to ourselves, that then somehow victory would be ours?

Have we forgotten the One we are supposed to become more like, taking the path that involves carrying a Cross? Lean in. We are so painstakingly uncomfortable with the way of Christ, with the way that Christ truly died, rejection and shame borne fully for the world to scorn and see.

This season has finally given a humility that gives an openness to be faithful to what has actually been given and not just striven for. Do I truly have open hands if I am unwilling to step in to the here and now?

This is not another post where things have landed in a perfectly written package, tied up with a bow, life figured out and hurt forgotten. This is another confession, another reminder that as I pray for God to remember me, maybe it’s me that needs to do the remembering.

Then Job answered the LORD and said:
“I know that you can do all things,
and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted.
‘Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?’
Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand,
things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.
‘Hear, and I will speak;
I will question you, and you make it known to me.’
I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear,
but now my eye sees you;
therefore I despise myself,
and repent in dust and ashes.”
— Job 42:1-6
O LORD, my heart is not lifted up;
my eyes are not raised too high;
I do not occupy myself with things
too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul,
like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, hope in the LORD
from this time forth and forevermore.
— Psalm 131
Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.
— Psalm 25:5

Crux probat omnia. The Cross tests everything.