Waiting For Breakthrough

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Last week we talked about the futility of rushing ahead of God and the importance of waiting on his timing.

This can make sense in our minds, but it’s not always easy to put into practice.  The feeling of helplessness is tough when we long to feel in control, to feel that there’s something we can do to end our season of waiting.

But the truth is: sometimes we just have to wait…  And sometimes the wait is long…  And sometimes we can’t understand why it has to be so long.

What we can do though, is keep our eyes on God- the God of the impossible, the one who can bring sudden and dramatic breakthrough, even after a long wait.

We see this in the Bible- the man sitting by the pool of Bethesda, who had been ill for 38 years, the woman who had suffered bleeding for 12 years and tried every possible solution, the man who had been born blind.  Each of them had waited several years, longing for healing- in the case of the man by the pool even longer than I have been alive- but in a single encounter with Jesus everything was transformed.

I have seen it happen in my life too.  For years I was seeking God for freedom from the feelings of shame and worthlessness that crippled me.  I felt that, like the woman with the bleeding, I had tried everything and nothing had worked.  I knew the truth in my head, but I couldn’t find the way to truly believing it in my heart.

It is not an easy place to be: stuck in a situation where you long for change but you feel helpless to move it forward, and it’s even worse when you realise God is the only one who can help you, but it seems that he is silent and you can’t understand why.

The wait seemed like an endless cycle:

  • Grasping eagerly at every possible solution that arose: thinking maybe if I read this book, or prayed this prayer, or talked to this person, or took this action it would be the key to unlock the healing.
  • Dealing with disappointment as time and time again my hopes were dashed.
  • Realising that the only thing I could do was to wait and pray.
  • Handling the frustration of prayers that seemed to go unanswered.
  • Wondering if there was something I was doing wrong, or if I should just accept things as they were, or if God even cared.

The wait was long and hard and, while I don’t want to dwell on that time, I also don’t want to forget that time.  I want to acknowledge that the waiting is part of the story.  I don’t ever want to share a testimony that jumps straight to the healing without mentioning the challenge of the waiting, because it is a part of the story that people who are waiting now need to hear.

It is a part of the story that I need to remember in facing other seasons of waiting, because as I remember the waiting, I also remember the impact of the breakthrough that finally came, when God did something that only he could do. Shame was transformed into confidence and despair gave way to hope in a way that was instant but lasting.  It was like coming out of a dark, narrow tunnel into a bright spacious place (hence the title of this blog) and remembering that gives me hope.

As we enter this season of Advent, it is a time of waiting: a time of admitting our need and our helplessness, waiting for God to do what only he can do.  It is a time of remembering his promises, and it is a time of hope, even in our waiting, because God is faithful.

“The people who walk in darkness will see a great light. For those who live in a land of deep darkness, a light will shine.”  Isaiah 9:2 (NLT)

God’s timing may be slower than we would like, but he does know what he is doing, he does have a good plan.  No situation is beyond the reach of his transforming power and, though the waiting is hard, when the breakthrough comes it is absolutely worth the wait.

If you are waiting for a breakthrough at the moment I’d love to pray for you. Just leave a comment or send me an email at lifeinthespaciousplace@yahoo.com

Join me throughout November and December as we explore the topic of waiting.  Click here for an index page of all the posts in the series.

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      Holly Barrett   Kristin Hill Taylor - 3 Word Wednesday  purposefulfaith.com       

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29 thoughts on “Waiting For Breakthrough

  1. I frequently find myself frustrated at how long it’s taking me to get through my problems. My therapist always has the same answer, “You’re trying to make this happen on your time, and it’s God’s time. Trust the process”. I know this is the truth, but it’s so hard to do it.

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    1. I felt the same for a long time and there are no easy answers. I don’t know why these things have to take so long. For me, the waiting wasn’t pleasant but it was a time when my faith was strengthened a lot as I learned to turn to God and be honest with him.
      I know it’s not easy, but keep going! Even the little baby steps forward add up. Sometimes it feels like you’re getting nowhere and then there’s a moment when you look round and see how far you’ve come. You will get there! Praying for you!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yup. I have no idea what to do about this! It happens every other week or so. No rhyme or reason to it. I guess I just need to keep checking. It’s frustrating, because I really appreciate and value feedback….

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  2. It has slipped my mind, duh, that advent is a season of waiting. There is a situation with one of my children that has required me to wait and hope. I understand it better as I see it through the lens of those that were waiting for the birth of the Savior.

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    1. It encourages me to think that even after a long wait God sent Jesus to be a light in the darkness and that even in the waiting he had a plan. I’m glad it helps as you think about your situation. Praying for you!

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  3. This: “I don’t ever want to share a testimony that jumps straight to the healing without mentioning the challenge of the waiting, because it is a part of the story that people who are waiting now need to hear.” And so much of this post and series. I’ll be emailing you at some point Lesley : ) You are so appreciated! Keep sharing His truth!

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  4. Dear Lesley … thank you for the wise and gentle reminder that waiting is a part of our story. Not to be rushed through, for there are so many needed lessons there that have become an integral part of who we’ve become along the way …

    Thank you for sharing … advent blessings to you today, friend.

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  5. Thank you for this encouraging reminder of how waiting is part of and important in our healing, Lesley. I love this truth – “I don’t ever want to share a testimony that jumps straight to the healing without mentioning the challenge of the waiting, because it is a part of the story that people who are waiting now need to hear.” So very true. Thank you for never making us feel the pressure of instant-fixes. Some people say we should “get over it and move on” or to have more faith, not realizing what it’s really like. Thank you for always understanding the waiting. Advent blessings and hugs to you!

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    1. Thanks, Trudy. It is hard when people don’t understand and think we should be able to get over things quickly. Our own times of waiting can definitely develop compassion for others and help them know they’re not alone. I see that come across so well in your writing too. Blessings and hugs to you!

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  6. It’s fitting that I read your post tonight. I just had a prayer session with God where I questioned why he doesn’t do something about a certain situation. 🙂 It’s a time of waiting and remembering his promises and hoping, because he is faithful. Thanks for sharing this!

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  7. Hi Lesley! I’d appreciate your prayers for me. I am having back issues, starting a few weeks ago. I’m seeing a doctor today, and I hope I can get some kind of therapy to work back to normal. Thank you.
    Waiting. Yeah, I stink at that. I want what I want when I want it. I’m such a child sometimes. Your point about timing, and what will work in my favor in waiting is such a good one. I needed to read it, especially in my current circumstances! May God give me his grace to patiently await my healing, and to be joyful in the meantime.
    Blessings,
    Ceil

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  8. Thank you for sharing this. It’s as if you articulated all I was feeling in my heart. I am going through the difficult process of renewing my mind, not allowing old patterns of depression and lack of self worth and value to control my thoughts, but it can be a minute by minute battle, despite knowing the truth. I am praying for a breakthroughs like you described, where suddenly hope appears and all despair falls away. Thank you for being so honest.

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    1. Thanks for commenting, Yvonne. It is a difficult process, and usually a gradual one. Old patterns can be so ingrained. Praying with you for a breakthrough and that you know God with you in the meantime as you keep taking little steps forward.

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