I spent this past week in Green Lake, Wisconsin with many people from Redeemer. We travel there every year for the Holy Spirit conference where our worship team leads worship. It's always a great week. The grounds are stunning, peaceful. We all cram into one house together for all kinds of family time...finding out who snores, who's loud, who doesn't like loud, eating good food, watching Pastor John giggle around midnight, etc. Good times.
This year, Randy Clark and Rachel Hickson were the main speakers. It was good to see Randy again and this was my first time to hear Rachel speak. She's a dynamo. I loved her heart and her obvious passion for intimacy with God. She challenged and encouraged my heart. I felt strengthened after listening to her.
Rachel spoke much about the process of waiting on God for promises fulfilled. She talked about the importance of continuing to persevere, to keep going, to keep your head up as a son/daughter of God. It seems like I've heard this topic on waiting come up at almost every conference I've attended. It's in many books that I read and on many teachings I follow on Podcasts. When Rachel spoke about this, I found myself feeling very encouraged and frustrated at the same time, to be honest! It's encouraging to know that, if so many people recognize this kind of season, I must be on the right track. It seems like a process of waiting on God to answer must be some sort of rite of passage in the Kingdom. He must know that I can survive and succeed at this. However, it was frustrating to hear because I don't want to hear one more person talk about the elements of process. I'm at a place where I feel done hearing and reading about it...I want God to finish this season so badly. Feeling encouraged and frustrated at the same time makes me feel bi-polar in my head. I used to beg God to show me what I had to do to end this season of waiting. I'm starting to figure out that there is nothing I can do...but wait and trust. It seems so simple in words, but this is the hardest thing I've had to do in my relationship with Him. I feel really weak and vulnerable to absolute failure...and yet He is so faithful to hold my head up and keep me moving forward in him. I have a love/hate relationship with process. I hate the pain and the buttons it pushes in my heart, but I wouldn't trade it for anything at the same time. I have learned so much about what true faith is and there is no other way to learn faith, but through unanswered prayer. I have learned that His goodness is not conditional on whether or not He gives me a "yes" for the desires of my heart. His goodness just stands on its own merit. I would not have learned this any other way. I am learning that hope does not disappoint and I am learning that God is true to His Word. These are all concepts I have read about in Scripture. Now I know them by knowing Him.
Tonight I am feeling really frustrated by the process God has me in. But frustration can never keep me from adoration of His goodness. My spirit is echoing the cries of David in Psalm 42:5, "Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God." I don't care what happens or doesn't happen in the days and years ahead of me. God is worthy. If you have an unanswered prayer or an unfulfilled promise and you're wondering why, more than likely you are in a process. God has something to teach you that is bigger than what you're asking for. His teachings are gifts, healings to wounds, and treasures beyond imagination. He's a good Father who knows what we need before we ask Him. If you're feeling the birth pangs of process, no matter how uncomfortable they may be, bless Jesus today. Because, just as a women in labor, there is no turning back in our walk with God. We're in this until something is birthed in our lives...and birth is inevitable.