Wishing the time away is not something we typically do during the summer. For those still in school, you finally get a break from classes. There are vacations to look forward to, pools to swim in, and an endless amount of ice cream to enjoy. Throughout the rest of the year, it seems like we are always counting down to something. Even in the summer, we wish we were older, we wish we had graduated, we wish we had a different job. The clock is always ticking and we so often forget to sit back and realize, “wow, my life is actually pretty cool right now.” So for those of you with FOMO, those who are older and wiser, and those of you who always have a calendar countdown (guilty), I hope this can remind you why where you are now is the best place to be.
There are three really big things that keep us wishing time would go faster: impatience, a lack of contentment, and comparison. I wanted to unpack these things individually but I also wanted to share my own story with restlessness. Growing up, I was always counting to the next age (who didn’t?). “When I’m 13, my life will be like this,” “when I’m 16 my life will be like this,” “when I’m 18… 20.” It wasn’t until I turned 20 that I took a step back and realized just how goofy I had been. When you’re 20 you are often halfway through college, sometimes living on your own, and suddenly realizing the small adult responsibilities you have will become full-on big adult responsibilities quicker than you thought. My instant reaction was to hold on to my childhood and run away as far as I could go.
But at the same time… I was counting down to other things. Yeah, I didn’t want to get older, but I was excited to start my career and graduate, I wanted to get married, I wanted to have a deeper relationship with God… and I wanted it ASAP (and without aging a bit). Just thinking about how badly I wanted to speed everything up gives me a headache. I had to learn these three lessons in order to chill and slow down. Honestly, I am still learning them every day. I hope you can understand that I have never been someone who wanted to act my own age or live in the moment so you can understand that if I can do it, so can you.
WAITING ON GOD’S TIMING
Psalm 27:14 says, “Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” I know, I know. Easier said than done. I get it. But let’s get real for a moment. Tinder may help you find a date fast but God’s the one that’s going to find you the Godly husband. God’s timing is always perfect. He never arrives before we can handle what He’s given us and He never shows up too late. Christine Caine says this in her devotional, “We may think He is [late], but that’s because we confuse due dates with due seasons and we set ourselves up for disappointment.”
We need to understand that no matter what we do, God functions in His own timing. We have to adapt to that timing and pray for patience in the waiting. God is coming with the perfect solution. All we have to do is seek Him and wait. Colossians 1:11-12 says, “Be strengthened with all power according to His glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father.”
LEARN HOW TO BE CONTENT
Contentment is a weird thing. Some see contentment as giving up or being complacent. In reality, contentment is simply the trust that God has given you the perfect season and has set you up with everything that you need. You are still running the race, you are still improving, but you are satisfied with what you have. Philippians 4:11-12 says, “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation.” How cool would it be to always feel like this? No matter what life throws at us, we would be content because we have faith that God is in control. Christine Caine (once again) brought up an amazing point in one of the devotionals I read earlier this week:
“If you’re in a season of waiting, of what feels like the fall or winter, and you wish you were in a different time, know that God has more for you to learn:
- Recognize and reflect on how far this present season has brought you.
- Ask the question: Is there more to learn here?
- Appreciate the opportunities this season has given you.
And then, keep waiting, trusting that God will bring growth in all your seasons.”
Whenever your impatience grows or you are unsatisfied with what you have, utilize these steps to help you grow and appreciate what is really going on around you. Embrace what God is doing and learn the lessons He is trying to teach you.
END THE COMPARISON
I was watching a vlog Zoella posted last week and she brought up such a wonderful point. She talked about a post one of her friends had shared on Instagram saying something along the lines of,
I am not skinny enough.
I am not smart enough.
I am not pretty enough.
I am not cool enough.
But compared to what? I only want to be myself and that is more than enough.
Zoe went on to elaborate, “Enough? Compared to what? Compared to who? No one, not even my closest friends and family, can really ever fully understand who I am and what I have the capacity to be and do.” She may not be religious, but she sure was preaching. If you are simply being yourself and being the person you know you are, there can be no such thing as comparison. No one can say you aren’t “enough” or are “too much” of something. Not even you can say that to yourself.
2 Corinthians 10:12 says, “When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.” Stop comparing your timeline to someone else’s. You are not them and you were never made to be them. Your schedule, your Godly purpose, was individually created just for you and cannot even be slightly compared to someone else’s. Know who you are and know that you are beyond comparison.
When you walk through your life thinking about where or who you should be- stop yourself. You are in the right place at the right time. Walk through life with less anxiety and worry that you are falling behind and missing out and understand that God knows exactly what He’s doing. Stay content, remove comparison, and have faith in the waiting. Let’s not wish time away.