Part 2: Waiting.
In last week’s article, Praying Through Changing Seasons, I shared how many seem to be experiencing a “Season of Life” change in 2018, one that’s requiring a type of spiritual metamorphosis by the hand of the Lord, as we are being transformed into His image.
This week I have the pleasure of writing with one of my “spiritual daughters,” Karin Kratzer, who is also experiencing this season of life change and has been learning through the process of “waiting.”
In the process of metamorphosis, there is no doubt a waiting period during which time the caterpillar wraps itself in a new home before emerging into a beautiful butterfly. During this process it may look like nothing is happening, such as in a time of “waiting.”
BUT, truth be told, MUCH is happening as the caterpillar is going through its transformational process, just as happens to us in a season of change that requires waiting.
Karin writes, “I love the faithfulness of the seasons. Without a doubt, we know that after a winter of bitter cold, ice and snow, spring will faithfully appear. It’s trustworthy and factual. Not a figment or a dream. Seasons change! In the same way that nature goes through seasons, we too go through seasons of the soul; some good and some bad. Sometimes we can find ourselves in the middle of a winter season of our soul that feels like it will never end! What do we do then?
“We must learn to pray and wait…”
Waiting is a curious thing. No matter what we get or where we are, we always seem to be waiting for the next thing. Like a single person waiting for marriage, who gets married and waits for a baby to come. Once the baby is here, they wait for the chance to buy the bigger house to hold the growing family, or the better job, or maybe for some, it’s just for a hard season to end! We seem to always be waiting for the next thing!
I have often wondered though, if our waiting is misdirected. In our waiting, we often times become impatient, frustrated or just give up. Why is that? Could it be because we’re not looking in the right direction?
Luke 12:37a says, “Blessed are those servants whom the master will find watching when he comes.” The NLT says, “ready and waiting.” What if instead of getting impatient on waiting for earthly things to transpire, we redirected our waiting toward the return of our Master, Jesus? In this Lenten season we take time to reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice that we could one day see Him face to face! Don’t get me wrong, there are definite times in our lives when we’re waiting for things to transpire, but what if we can redirect our gaze and prepare our heart in the waiting?
There’s a parable that Jesus told about preparing and waiting. It’s the parable of the Ten Virgins found in Matthew 25:1-13: In the passage we find five wise virgins that had their lamps filled with oil, ready to wait out the longest night for the Bridegroom to come.
The five foolish virgins were not prepared to wait through the entire night, so they begged the five wise for some of their oil. Because the five foolish had to go and buy more oil, they missed the return of the Bridegroom. When they got to the door and knocked the Bridegroom responded by saying he did not know them.
The five foolish, got impatient, gave up waiting and then it was too late!
With that kind of response from the Bridegroom, I think a good question for us would be, “What does it look like to have our lamps filled?” I believe that we are the lamp and the oil that we store up on the inside is the depth of relationship we have with the Bridegroom. We are called to be friends of God, who hear His voice and do His will.
The deeper the relationship we have with God and the more we hear His voice, the more oil we have in reserve in our hearts for the long seasons of waiting. We have to learn to wait both in the long seasons and the short ones. How important it is for us to not waste away in our season of waiting.
I have been blessed to be a part of the Wilmington House of Prayer since the beginning. When we first opened on Main Street, to help maintain the 24/7 schedule, I would sometimes take four hours on the weekend, in the middle of the night in the place of prayer and worship. That season of sacrificing my comfort and my time to pray changed my life.
I grew in my relationship with God in such depth that my life will never be the same. I learned how to hear God’s voice away from any noise or distraction. I learned to just be still, fix my gaze and wait on Him.”
Now, I’ll pick up where Karin left off, bringing it back to Metamorphosis. That unseen waiting period of the caterpillar in its chrysalis stage; though it is going through a major transformational process, the process is of utmost importance.
Such is our life in Christ; we’re being transformed into His image to be a beautiful representation of Him on the earth, but also a companion that will rule and reign with Him for eternity, as the Bride of Christ; and this is a process, one which requires times of waiting.
May we take the time to pray and wait, to prepare our hearts, that we would be that pure and spotless Bride in which He is coming back for … filling our “lamps” on the inside with oil that will sustain even the longest season of waiting, waiting for our Bridegroom King’s return!
Robyn Morris is the Director of the Wilmington House of Prayer Community Prayer Room on Main Street.
Karin Kratzer is a Worship Leader at Dove Church and a Senior Leader of the Wilmington House of Prayer.