There’s a title for you, huh? It beckons the question of my heart in this season.
You see, my heart longs for so many things – but yet, my heart
at the very same time, is full and lacking nothing. Most of my heart is truly understanding from a literal and spiritual sense, for the first time, what Paul said to the church in Philippi, “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.“ I can relate to this in more ways than honestly, I ever thought possible. But at the same time – I have no idea what to do with this contentment.
I don’t know what to do with the contentment paralleling the confusion of hurt and pain in other areas. Or the fact that I love where I am at, but the longing for an addition to my life has never been stronger. I can compare it to something as simple as enjoying a meal with a friend. What if someone asked you what was better – the food or the conversation? Now for some, this might be an easier answer – but for others, our first answer would “obviously” be the conversation. But at the same time, our longing for the food at the same time,
even if just in that moment, is just as strong. You see – its similar to where I’m at – I love the conversation, and it feels like it’s also time to eat – but there is no food to partake in. Therefore, my heart is content with who I’m with – but also longing for more. Understand?
So, can you see where you are in this? Maybe you’re the person on the other end – where who you are with isn’t really there, they are discontent, lost, and hurting – and you really don’t know what to do for them. Maybe you’re the one who is discontent – where you wake up everyday knowing there must be more, but you can’t seem to be content where God has placed you now. Or maybe you’re right here with me, having a meal, and let’s just “say” your friend is Jesus. And to be honest, you are genuinely enjoying His company. There are moments you forget you are hungry – but then all of sudden your stomach starts to growl and you find yourself asking, “Jesus, is it time to eat yet?”
What do you do when the longing has come – but the meal hasn’t arrived?
This may seem obvious – but honestly, sometimes especially for females, it’s not. We can do 1 of 2 things – we can gripe and complain, or we can avoid it and run. Both distance ourselves from our Savior. The picture of the dinner with Jesus is perfect for this – how often do we ask to have dinner with someone who is always griping/complaining about something, or someone who is on their phone the whole time, basically there, but really just avoiding you all-together? Neither one is enjoyable – let alone based in contentment. As sons and daughters, we have to trust in our Father. We have to trust that His ways are better than ours and that because He loves us, we can’t worry about the when, how, or why – we just have to have faith in His timing and enjoy the conversation. Easy, right?
“If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”
God didn’t call us to run ahead of Him, or even walk pitifully behind Him – He’s called us to walk next to Him. While walking next to Him you are gratifying the hunger of your soul to be known, cared for, listened to, understood, desired, pursued, and encouraged. Though you might not have the meal in front of you that you think you need – the Bread of Life Himself is with you to meet your needs in this season. And this process, of waiting for your “meal” to come has passed – eventually, you’ll be waiting for a different meal in a very different season. So learning to wait now will be for yours and my good.
“I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry.”
You Seek Counsel
“Don’t try to figure it out, Jess.” Wise words from my mentor. I don’t know what I would do without those from whom I seek wisdom and guidance. I get the millions of questions out of my head and then they give me correction and/or affirmation. They clarify what I need to think on, let go of, and hold onto. And most of the time, they tell you what you don’t want to hear. The right counsel doesn’t tell you what you want to hear, they tell you what you need to hear.
“Where there is no guidance the people fall, But in abundance of counselors there is victory.”
You Choose To Enjoy The Conversation
We don’t know God’s ways, nor can we figure out His timing. Believe me, if we could, I probably would have come close to figuring out how. Each day in this season I have to choose to stop concentrating on my growling longing – though healthy – it’s place in my current season has not yet come. So I must choose to focus on Jesus. I choose to seek first His Kingdom and then allow Him to take care of my aching heart and growling tummy in His way and in His timing. An old familiar hymn comes to mind when I write this…
“Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.”
I conclude with this, these are not the end-all, be-all solutions to calming that longing in your heart – but I do believe that these will help you change your perspective, give you hope and faith that you are not alone, and remind you (as it did me) that the conversation is and will always be more important than the meal. So, my friends, until God tells us what to do next, may we turn our eyes upon Jesus and enjoy the conversation – and when the meal arrives, I’m sure it will be one glorious feast.