This scripture ran through my head constantly as I approached the end of my undergraduate career.
College wasn’t the easiest thing I have ever dealt with and certainly not the hardest. But, at the peak of a grueling 18-hour course load and a 100-page thesis I was conducting, I was glad the end was finally near.
This was the moment I had waited for and worked towards for 4.5 years, my entire adulthood. I had an assurance in my heart that the months following graduation would be some of my highest yet.
I felt as though I could dream again, outside the confines of a four-walled classroom, and overbearing course work. I thought to myself the sky is the limit, and quotes from the book, “Oh the Places You’ll Go,” danced in my head.
Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!”
After graduation, I started my search for a job. Nothing suited my fancy, so I continued to work at the job I had throughout college until I figured things out.
At one time, I had all these plans for my life, “maybe I would be a missionary in Uganda, maybe a bestselling author, or a stay at home mom,” I would think to myself.
As months, post-graduation passed, those plans or wishful thoughts became a distant memory. I felt lost, I felt as though I had no passion, and I had no clue where I was headed.
I figured maybe I had made the wrong decision to get a degree in Communication, and that maybe I would be better suited to be a teacher. Writing and being surrounded by children had always been some of my biggest passions.
I searched the Internet through and through on different ways to become a teacher without having a degree in Education. I was in luck there was a program that allowed individuals that had a Bachelor’s degree to become a certified teacher in Louisiana within a short time span.
I figured I could work at a local preschool while I worked towards my certification in education.
When I landed a job at a local pre-school I was ecstatic to pour into the lives of little ones and discover more about the education field.
My first day was grueling, I found myself sitting in my car crying out to God saying, “why, why, God, this is not what I planned at all.” In that moment, I heard a still small voice say, “allow this to make you better, and not bitter.”
I wiped my tears and figured if this is meant to make me better it’ll sure feel better than it does today.
I committed to working at the pre-school for a year. Firstly, because I had no idea where I was going, but certainly not in education. Secondly, because I hated the way job hopping looked on a résumé. And lastly, I was curious to find out how God would make me better in this situation.
You see I had forgotten the other lines in the book that read:
“I’m sorry to say so
but, sadly, it’s true
can happen to you.”
Geez, if only I had remembered that sooner.
In a world with drive thru restaurants and instant gratification at its finger tips patience can be a character quality that majority of people have struggled with at one time or another.
Either I could run from the what God wanted to do in my heart or I could dive in head first. God had been in the business of making me patient for years. Time and time again I would resist and yet again He would have to rein me in and tell me to be patient.
This time I figured I wasn’t going to get anywhere unless, I finally surrendered and let God teach me the virtue patience.
Patience is the power or capacity to endure without complaint in something difficult or disagreeable; forbearance, long suffering.
There’s a saying “nothing in the world worth having comes easy.”
And patience, though worth having it certainly does not come easy.
“Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
Psalms 37:4 ESV
When we have desires inside of us that line up with scripture and do not go away with time, most likely that desire is there to stay.
Whether it be a desire for a career, a spouse, ministry, children, or freedom from an illness; we as people can at times grow weary when we do not get the desires of our heart in the timeframe we see fit.
When we place a desire on the Lord with a time line we can hinder God’s blessings. We figure if he didn’t do it, he won’t ever do it. That is a lie from Satan. Never in scripture does God say, “pray and if I don’t answer feel free to figure things out on your own.”
We have a God that loves us and desires to provide what our heart’s desire. But, our God is holy and he knows what we need, how we need it, and most importantly when we need it.
The Bible does say,
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
Proverbs 3:5 NIV
Maybe you have a desire today. Maybe you have prayed year after year with nothing insight to give you hope in that desire.
Know that God is much bigger than any desire you have, trust him. And remember in the time of waiting to allow Him to make you better and do not grow bitter.