Many times, we will find ourselves surrounded by suffering. It seldom makes any sense and it sometimes hurts so deep that words fail to adequately describe our pain. I wrote the following blog in a time such as this and with these few words, I found hope.
“When life is heavy and hard to take, go off by yourself. Enter the silence. Bow in prayer. Don’t ask questions. Wait for hope to appear. Don’t run from trouble. Take it full-face. The ‘worst’ is never the worst.” Lamentations 3:28-30 (MSG) (italics and bold mine)
I struggle with the idea of waiting especially when “life is heavy and hard to take.” Life happens. And when it gets combined with chaos and suffering, I tend to fall apart. When I finally run to God, I seek a quick fix from Him instead of refuge.
For me, waiting for hope can feel like torture. Most of my anxiety comes from choosing to tackle my problems instead of trusting God. After all, He desires to have a relationship with me, especially during difficult times. He wants to give me the hope that I need so that I can endure and press on. When I choose to handle things on my own, I go in all different directions because I don’t know what to do. My mind stays incredibly busy, planning, strategizing my next move. Unable to hear God or even think about God, I fall apart.
In times of trouble, I should avoid letting my mind get that crazy. Lamentations tells me that I need to stop. If I want to listen to God and experience the hope He has for me, I need to get alone with Him. I need to let go of the wrestling, pleading, crying and embrace the silence in waiting.
Entering the silence means facing my problems head on and laying them in God’s hands. It means giving Him control and allowing God to do His thing in my life. It means confession, admission of pride—letting go of my I-can-do-this attitude and trust Him with all the messiness of my life.
Honestly, in the midst of hard, I want a miracle. I want the tangible instead of faith. I want to avoid confessing my inability to deal with life on my own because of pride. The silence however, shows me the truth. Without Christ, I can’t. With Him, I can. In Him, I have everything.
All of this then reminds me that the hope I have in Christ continues to work miracles in my life. In laying down my pride, God’s grace works through my hardships. I can focus on serving others by extending God’s grace to them. Hope appears and joy soon follows. Bam! I have my miracle!
No matter what hardships you face, you’ve got to wait for hope to appear. I promise it will! Don’t avoid the hard. Instead, stop, pray and wait.
“Why? Because the Master won’t ever walk out and fail to return. If he works severely, he also works tenderly. His stockpiles of loyal love are immense.” Lamentations 3:31-33a (MSG)
Why do you find it difficult to wait for God during hardships? How can you encourage others to wait for hope to appear?
This blog post originally appeared in the Sacred Story Ministries Blog.