Today is the 30th Birthday of one of my favorites. She is handling it way better than I did. Today, she posted on Facebook: “I’ve been looking forward to 30 since 25 so I’m über-excited about this particular birthday.”
I, on the other hand, went a little, “Oh-my-pants-I’m-turning-30-and-I’ve-failed-at-life,” kind of crazy. I went for a walk on the waterfront along the Willamette River and admitted to God that I felt like I had failed because I didn’t have an awesome career or a fabulous marriage/family. In fact, I was nowhere close to either of those realities and I was a week away from 30 – unemployed and severely single.
God gently replied, just on the north side of the Morrison Bridge, near the pink tree where I often hear God’s responses;
“You’re wrong. Failing, for you, would be already having those things. You are waiting for a reason. For something better. For me.”
I believe this. I believe I have seen glimpses of this in the incredible amount of healing and growth that has happened in the almost two years since this walk. But I still feel like I’m waiting.
And sometimes it feels a little like that time I went a tad berserker because I was ridiculously hungry because I waited until 1:30 pm to eat my first meal of the day and because I was waiting for what felt like an eternity in a food cart line. And by wait I mean absolutely NO movement. There was no ordering then waiting for food prep. Oh no, no, no, I was waiting for the OPPORTUNITY to order. It was excruciating. I was good for no one. Really. I couldn’t talk to anyone because I all I could think about was how hungry I was and how the line WAS NOT MOVING and gave no indication that it would anytime soon. It’s a little embarrassing how obsessed I got.
Eventually I got my Vietnamese sandwich and then I walked the half-mile to my friends’ home to eat it. Those 15 minutes were totally bearable because of the movement.
I’m learning what it looks like to wait with elegance, especially when it feels like there is no movement. It’s hard to not be in control, to not take the little that I know and run with it. But that is what God is asking of me. God is asking me to be strong…to be courageous… to wait. Waiting isn’t for the weak.
This whole food cart scene is a prime example of failing at waiting with elegance. But that’s OK, because while I’m waiting I’m learning how failure can be an excellent teacher, too.
Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.
~ Psalm 27:14 NIV