Wednesday, May 21, 2014

When Waiting Is Hard

The sun comes up each morning and sets each evening. I lose track of the days’ details, focused on the waiting, straining to see what is ahead.

Almost two years ago I wrote my first blog post on a stifling July morning, the weight of our circumstances pressing down hard on me, leaving me gasping for breath.

Six months later I wrote about how hard it was to live inthis city we desperately loved.

One year ago I said we were stuck in the middle. We almost moved to the suburbs.

Nine months ago we moved out of the condo into a house in our neighborhood. We exhaled.
And then we homeschooled because the local school just felt too big.

Two weeks ago I guest posted for Zach Hoag about how conflicted we were about homeschooling and how we wanted to be part of our neighborhood school.

One week ago I received a phone call from a school. A neighborhood school. A smaller school. There was room for her. We took our baby up the cement steps and held our breath. She fell in love. We registered her for first grade.

She’s going to public school.


There was a book I remember my second grade teacher reading to us during story time, All Things - Even Frisky. I don’t remember much of it outside of a rambunctious puppy and a basketball net, but I remember the crux of it was that all things work together for good, for those who love God and are called according to His purpose. And the angsty eight year old that I was wondered *when* all this working together would actually happen.

I find myself still wondering.

Photo Courtesy of Austin Upton

I so easily fall into the trap of not seeing how things are woven and redeemed. How the fractured and shattered are turning into this amazing mosaic.

Then there’s time. The whole kronos versus kairos thing we have going on while caught between the now and the not yet.

The waiting is so very hard for me.

I want to be able to model something different for my girls. I want to show them they can move in the direction of their dreams and not worry, not wait, not wonder what will happen. I want them to have the confidence to chase those dreams.

I’ve spent far too much of my time wishing things were different and wondering when the breakthrough would come. So much waiting.

There are some things I’m still waiting for, hoping for. But I don’t want to wait the way I have been. I want to find a new way.

So let’s notice the way the sun rises each morning and sets each evening. And in the in-between let’s listen to the birds sing and feel the grass brush up on our ankles. Let’s look for animals and castles in the clouds and play I Spy just one. more. time. We’ll sing a little bit more, a little louder. There will be time for one more painting, one more drawing. We will laugh at our mistakes and pull ourselves back up.

And I’ll keep writing. And one day, I’ll be done waiting.


Are you waiting for something? How do you handle the waiting time?


  1. I handle waiting poorly. I worry, I try to force things, I rant on and on about how it'll never work out in the end. And then it does, somehow, almost always differently than I thought but there it is.

    Glad for your news, happy, celebrating!

  2. Oh yes. The waiting is so hard. And I don't have good answers for how to do it well.

    I actually gave a sermon a few Sundays ago on the fact that Jesus sometimes doesn't meet our expectations. Because that's the reality. Sometimes he doesn't. And we've got to figure out what to do about that. (If you want to listen, here's the link:

    There are always regrets at the end of a talk, and where I wish I would have landed is what you are talking about here- a greater sense of hope. Yes, let's be honest about disappointments and frustrations, but at the same time, let's dare to hope and dream. I think some of how we find our way through that is in sharing stories with one another. Stories of both realities. Stories of frustration and stories of God meeting us. And how we are finding faith in the midst of both.

  3. Oh. Waiting. So hard. And not just when things are awful. We find ourselves in a mostly good season right now after some really awful seasons and I find myself struggling to enjoy the right now. Because it doesn't look like we thought it would and I feel like we might be missing something. So thank you for these words. My word for the year is enjoy. It could easily be abide. Or wait. Or rest.

  4. ah that's the crux of it... waiting and trusting. The older I get the easier it is for me to trust because I have seen and learned that God is faithful and will see me through whatever the struggle. But the waiting... I still find myself asking "how much longer Lord??" another great post Brenna, your writing always blesses me!

  5. I don't know that we will be done waiting this side of heaven and I think that's okay.

  6. Michelle BrenholtzMay 21, 2014 at 2:03 PM

    So glad to hear it all worked out. I know you would have handled either way fine. But I know this is something you hoped for and I am glad it is happening. As for waiting...I really am no good at it at all. I lack patience for the littlest things sometimes. But for those who wait, there is usually a great reward when it all comes around in God's timing. :)

  7. Nancy, I wish I knew why your wait time was so long. But I see such beauty all around you. I am so proud of you.

  8. I tend to wait for the "other shoe to drop" so I completely understand this!

  9. Waiting just stinks! But I think we are both getting better at it, slowly but surely!