waiting: could it be a gift?

Waiting is hard.  There are no two ways about it.  Eager anticipation or painful dread, watching the clock tick can be agonizing!

So why is waiting an ever-present component of the LORD’s plans for us? 

When we can’t trace His hand, when His thoughts are not ours (not even close!), we trust His heart.  His Word tells us that He “calls us into the wilderness to speak tenderly to us.” (Hosea 2:14)  He purposes these times when we encounter Him.  Where He has our full attention to reveal precious truth to us.  To give us a fresh reality of His Presence that is undiluted by other voices or circumstances. 

Do we dare to believe He calls us into a time of waiting to create breathing space to receive from Him more than we can hold?

What if there was a way to embark on your own journey to investigate the untapped beauty of waiting?  I am excited to say that I have found the perfect guide!  When GOD Says Wait: A Devotional Thought Journal, by Elizabeth Laing Thompson, was recently released by Shiloh Run Press, an imprint of Barbour Publishing!

Before I get to the really good stuff inside, let me gush a bit about the aesthetics of this book!  First, it is beautifully bound in a hard cover sturdy enough to cart with you anywhere!  A few eye-catching details grabbed my attention right away: the gorgeous raspberry/plum ombré color, the simple, classic and whimsical script fonts in the title, and the all-too-familiar “clocking” symbol we recognize from all our modern devices!  This waiting thing is a familiar place!  It can feel dark and lonely, but the cover of this book is bright and rich.  It speaks “fullness” and warmth!  Maybe this waiting thing isn’t so scary after all?

The pages inside are clean and crisp, bordered in the same gorgeous raspberry color with a matching place-holder ribbon.  But the words on each page immediately invite digging!  They beckon, “Get real, go deep, don’t be afraid to get a little bit messy (or a lot!). Take time to record this journey.  There are treasures here you will want to remember!”

“GOD’s Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path!”  Psalm 119:105

I love how Elizabeth heads each left page with an enlightening verse from the Bible, with space below each Scripture passage to record fresh responses to GOD’s Word, alone!  On the opposite page, Elizabeth shares encouraging thoughts about the truths of Scripture as they can be applied to our times of waiting.  She includes reflection questions that make me stop and think. . . and then record more discoveries or prayers on this second page.

Elizabeth’s words are few but relatable, timely and meaningful!  They are easy to remember and return to as my day shifts into gear.  Although so much about waiting is outside of our control, Elizabeth says there are two things we do have the power to choose:  how we wait, and who we become while we are waiting!  Stepping bravely into this journey (not away from it out of avoidance or fear) is worth it!

As I mentioned, this book will travel!  Some days, I read her thoughts and consider her questions and write nothing at all.  On those days, I simply need more time to process.  This is tough stuff!  But breaking open is beautiful in its own way.  Its most precious gifts cannot be rushed.  So, I tuck my journal in my bag and bring it with me, wherever the day takes me.  I never quite know when I will pull it out again as fresh realizations dawn.  But they do come!  When we are watching for them, answers to the cries of our hearts will come from the Father.  His Spirit will guide us on this journey.  He has unexpected blessings hidden here that He can’t wait for us to find!

Don’t take someone else’s word for it.  Let the light of hope brighten your time of waiting.  Dare to believe it can be a time of precious discovery!  Let Elizabeth lead you on your own journey of finding help and healing and growth from GOD’s word and from His Presence.  Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, or the “journaling” type, give it a shot!  It might surprise you what suddenly makes sense as you put pen to page to articulate your own experience, ponder the truth in GOD’s Word, wrestle through your questions, or pour out your heart in prayer.  Nothing delights our Savior more than to know we entrust the depths of our hearts to His care!

The last page of this journal includes Elizabeth’s prayer for each of her readers, that they will “look back and say, ‘I’m better because of the wait.’”  That they will “lift hands to heaven, tears in their eyes and praise in their hearts, and say, ‘it was worth the wait!’”

If you sense the nudge to see how other people encountered GOD in their times of waiting, especially in the Bible, this devotional journal is an excellent companion to the book, When GOD Says “Wait”: navigating life’s detours and delays without losing your faith, your friends, or your mind, also by Elizabeth Laing Thompson, and published by Shiloh Run Press, an imprint of Barbour Publishing.  Both books are available wherever books are sold!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.  But I am truly happy to do so!  I consider this book a gracious gift.  I can’t wait to see what story of GOD’s tender care for me in my times of waiting will unfold within its pages!  I am grateful for such a positive and hope-filled approach to one of life’s most difficult challenges!

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