Though it Linger

I remember the day we got the letter in the mail.

Earlier that year, my husband and I took a huge step of faith in conceiving our second child. We had no maternity insurance, no extra money (maybe $200 in our savings account), and we were living paycheck to paycheck, relying on my husband’s weekend side jobs just to pay our monthly bills.

And yet, we felt God inviting us to trust Him more than we trusted our money and our ability to provide for ourselves. We said yes and literally got pregnant that week. That was February of 2013.

Fast forward to the end of June. We had been trusting God for the $12,000 or so that it takes to pay for a baby and a hospital stay without insurance. We had been waiting for four months for His provision, my belly growing larger with each day, a constant reminder that there was no turning back.

We still had no money in our savings account.

We still were living paycheck to paycheck.

And then we got the letter. The letter that said our mortgage was going up $200 a month starting July 1st.

You can imagine our disappointment.

God, aren’t you supposed to be coming through FOR us? You’re definitely not supposed to be letting even more come up against us!

We barely had money to pay our bills for each month, let alone a $200 per month increase.

I couldn’t hold back the tears any longer.

I cried out to God:

You’re late. I expected You to have all this resolved a whole lot sooner so that I could breathe easier. I didn’t expect to have to demonstrate faith for this long.

Have you ever felt like God was late in your life?

Feel like God should’ve brought your mate already?

Feel like it’s taking forever to see a plus sign on that pregnancy test?

Feel like your dream should already be a reality?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in leveraging my life to be one of faith, it’s this: I always have to demonstrate faith longer than I’d like.

I’m really good at believing Him for a little while in my own strength.

And then my hands hold the letter of impossibility, and my strength is emptied.

It was impossible for us to pay for the baby when we conceived, but as I held that letter, looking down at my belly, the impossibility was no longer distant. It had a deadline.

I’ve learned that when we step out in faith, the impossibility we’re believing for almost always becomes more impossible than it began.

This tempts us to conclude that God is running late and therefore inattentive to our lives. We start to think that maybe His Word isn't true for me and my life.

And that’s when we must run to His Word.

For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false.

Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay (Habakkuk 2:3).

My heart leaps in my chest: Though it linger.

That’s exactly what it feels like when I'm waiting on God to act on my behalf!

The provision for my prayer lingers far longer than I’d like more often than not.

The word linger means to stay somewhere beyond the usual or expected time.

This definition exposed the root of my impatience in waiting on God: God acts later than I expect.

My impatience in waiting for Him to act has little to do with His being late.

My impatience is more the result of my expectation of when He will act.

The beginning of the verse says, “The revelation awaits an appointed time.”

All of God’s revelations- whether in word or in action - are calculated and precise.

God is not one who delays, allowing something to happen later than it should.

God awaits appointments.

The thing about God appointments is that the details are unknown to us.

This is a problem because I like to make my own appointments and my own schedule. That’s what we do in Western society.

But when we are trusting God in faith for something we cannot do, He makes the appointment.

He doesn’t tell us when or where to come.

He simply says, “I’ll come to you,” and invites us to trust that He will.

Divine appointments rarely align with our expectations, but they give us much more than solely a provision.

God appointments give us a story. A story that God is real and at work in our lives.

And I would much rather have a story full of intricacies that point to the glory of God than a provision which yields only my personal comfort and ease. Wouldn’t you?

Though it linger, whatever your {it} may be, wait for it.

Though it is taking longer than you expected, hold on to your hope.

God is not delaying, but drafting-drafting a detailed story that will point to His glory- the beauty of a God who is intimately involved in the lives of His people and faithful to His every Word.

Within hours of my tears over that letter, I got an email from my choir director asking me to share my testimony at choir rehearsal that week.

Really, God? You want me to get up in front of a large group of people and talk about Your faithfulness now? In the moment when I’m doubting it most?

But something miraculous happened as I jotted down notes for rehearsal. As I relived the faithfulness of God in my past, God strengthened my hope for His faithfulness in my future.

With tears and vulnerability, I shared our faith story - and our current dilemma - at rehearsal. “I don’t know how God is going to provide all the money we need, but I wholeheartedly believe I am going to have an amazing story to tell at the end of this.”

I walked out of the room to dry my tears. I looked up and said, “I trust You, God.”

I’ll never forget that moment of whole-hearted belief. No worry in my heart. No doubt in my mind. Just me and a big belly wet with the tears of trust.

The next day, God provided the entire amount for Camden’s birth.

The week after that, His favor flooded our finances. We won giveaways for gift cards on social media (2 of them! What are the odds?!), got a salary raise, and received a random check in the mail that was dated a year prior (just to name a few!).

Though your {it} is lingering, wait for it.

Hold onto your hope in the lingering.

Brace yourself for an incredible story, waiting patiently until the appointment arrives.

Do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. (Hebrews 10:35)