I love sitting down to write a post like this mainly because it means another foster has found a home, and as a side effect, I’ve been taught something from a 4-legged friend.
So let me introduce you to my nap-loving, teacher, Ophelia and give a little background. Ophelia was a bait dog. For those of you who don’t know what a bait dog is (I didn’t before I met her), people who participate in dog fighting need practice. Get the idea? Sick, right? Anyways, this beauty was a bait dog, rescued by Found Nation Animal Rescue, and spent roughly two months with foster’s before finding a home. She was housebroken, crate trained, loveable – to adults, kids, and other dogs – and had a tail that didn’t stop wagging. Each Saturday she would attend the adoption event(s), sit quietly, have individuals show interest, only to decide “not today”. “How could someone not want her week after week?” I often wondered.
Though she wasn’t aware she was waiting for her forever home, I of course was. It got me wondering how do we react in a season of waiting in our own lives? What route do we chose when life doesn’t unfold the way we had hoped? When we think we deserve something different, something more, how do we act? The moments when we simply feel stuck.
We all face these sorts of times. Times when we are ready for the green light, the next chapter, answers, but life won’t take its big foot off the break, it seems, regardless of what actions we take. What frustrating, confusing, overwhelming, hard bouts these can be. Many times, we want that job promotion, that relationship, that crystal ball to tell us the future, RIGHT NOW. What we often fail to realize in the “right now,” is the importance it plays for what is to come. Whatever season we are in now is a necessity to walk through, before we are able to experience the next.
Ophelia was a beautiful reminder that life doesn’t unfold on our command, but when we can sit content and prayful in the season of waiting, what is on the other side is miraculous. For her it was a loving home with kids to run around with and 3 other dogs to show her the ropes. For us, it could be a number of things. We must remember the vast love God holds for us. Such an all- encompassing, BIG, love that comforts us, gives us strength, provides guidance and wisdom during all phases. A love so incredibly detailed, that He has taken time to carefully and meticulously write every single word to our story. Every. Single. Word. Take a moment to wrap your mind around that. Wow! He cares that much about you and I to take that time to construct such an incredible novel known as our life, do you really think He will forget to roll out the red carpet when it’s time?
Every story has two sides though and we must remember we are one of those. God provides the road map, but we must have the patience and trust to follow. Having Ophelia, I began to realize that we, too, can adopt the patience she exhibited daily. We can still march forward, optimistically, and sometimes blindly, knowing that one day our eyes will be opened.
Here are a few ways to cultivate patience in our own seasons of waiting
1. Seek joy daily in the small things, while you wait for the big (or small next step) to be revealed
2. Accept life doesn’t unfold on our demand
3. Pray for wisdom
4. Ride the wave, instead of fighting it
5. Make a daily gratitude list. Some days may be a struggle, but search. Even if one is all you can find, at least you found it
6. Open your heart to learning
7. Ask for help
8. Trust there is a bigger plan
This week, let your focus be on what is in your control rather than on all the obstacles that are keeping you from being where you wish. And remember, your story’s not finished yet. There is still so much to come.