I like adventure, I like spontaneity.
In between the adventure and the highs and the thrill of new challenges there can be a lot of waiting and a lot of unknown. Living a little bit on the edge brings instability.
And I don’t like waiting and I don’t like not knowing. I don’t like being in limbo. I don’t like not knowing ‘the plan’. I want to know when and where and the purpose of the next adventure.
When I had the difficult meeting last January to be told my contract in South Sudan was coming to a premature end due to the insecurity at the base I was working on, it was embarrassing, but I cried twice. I cried when I shared how difficult it would be not to go back and see friends and people I was leaving behind, and I cried when sharing how much of a relief it had been to get the job and to know, at least for a year, what I was doing and where I was to be based. To be able to answer the awful question people like to ask of ‘what next…??’ To know I was financially secure for a year. To know my purpose for a whole supposed year. It was a relief and a blessing. And I cried at the thought of going back to limbo-land. And of having to mutter the answer of ‘..umm..not really sure…here for a few weeks, maybe there for a bit…we’ll see what happens…’ when the dreaded question would inevitably come up.
And so I was thrown back into another period of uncertainty and unknown. Somewhere I’d hung out before, and somewhere I did not want to return. I’m impatient: I want the adventure without the waiting for it.
Waiting is frustrating. Waiting makes you fidget. It’s the drumming of your fingers, the twitch in your toe, the biting of your nails. Waiting can be tiring. It can be draining. Waiting is irritating. It can grind you down. It can crush you. It can break you. It lies to you. It tells you that you’ve been forgotten. That you’re not valued, not noticed and or cared for. It can cause you to give up hope. It can send you home. It can put you back in the box you’d once dared to step out of it. It lies to you. It tells you not to dare to dream again.
It can take all you have, all your energy not to take those lies as truth.
And if you manage that?
If you can find a purpose and a peace in your waiting? If you can cling onto the small glimmer of hope, no matter how dim it fades?
It can make you stronger. It turns you into a fighter. You become a survivor. Lessons are learned. Patience is grown. Trust in God is stretched but grown. After the winter comes spring and it’s more glorious than before. Waiting can be the making of you.
This is a lesson I’m learning, and these are lessons I know I’ll come back to again and again in the future.
Hebrews 6:12, 15 ‘…imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised…
After waiting patiently, Abraham received what was promised.’