God’s Presence in Seasons of Waiting
By Amanda Waters
This is the latest post in a series where guest bloggers share how God has shown up in the stories they never expected to live. May these stories stir you toward hope and give you a glimpse of God’s goodness. Read previously published stories here.
We spend much of our life waiting. Waiting in line, waiting for a call, waiting for the laundry to finish, waiting for vacation to start, waiting for our favorite author to release a new book.
Often, waiting is simply a mundane (if sometimes annoying) part of everyday life; but sometimes, we enter into a season of waiting that is anything but mundane. We find ourselves in a space that is painful and heartbreaking where we long for answers.
In these spaces, I have learned the hard way that even when resolution doesn’t come as quickly as I want it to, I can find comfort knowing for certain that God will meet us there.
The Day Our Life Changed
On a sunny fall day in October 2020, my daughter and I were on our way to soccer practice when our car was hit by a truck. My daughter sustained a traumatic brain injury, was life-flighted to the hospital, and our family’s life changed in a heartbeat.
We waited to learn her diagnosis, to see if and when she would wake up. Would she talk, eat, smile, laugh? What physical and mental abilities would or would not return? The wait inched along, one day at a time.
She eventually woke up, smiled, sat up, and began to communicate in her own silent way. We celebrated and rejoiced and cried happy tears; but there were always more questions, more waiting. Then she laughed and talked and read and gained more and more physical and cognitive strength and ability. Still, there were more questions and more waiting.
In the most intense periods of waiting, my world shrunk down to little more than the present moment. The unknown was too big and difficult to contemplate. I desperately wanted to know what exactly we were waiting for, and how long we would be waiting. I felt like if I knew when or what the end would be, then the wait would be more bearable. God didn’t answer my prayers with knowledge of the future, or assurances of what exactly was to come. Instead, God answered my prayers with his presence.
God’s Presence in Waiting
As my husband and I sat in hospital rooms, God met us in ways that were intangible – in rest when we needed it, in his indefinable presence, and in peace that truly passed all understanding. He also, very notably, met us through people. People who prayed when I could not, hoped when I could not. People who cleaned our house, took care of our son, mowed our lawn, bought us food, gas, and parking passes. People who traveled long distances to simply sit with us in our grief and uncertainty.
God met us through the kindness of strangers who spoke words of profound encouragement directly from the Holy Spirit. He met us through the gentleness and care of doctors and nurses; and through the kindness of skilled therapists who played “Eye of the Tiger” as hype music while she worked so hard because it is my daughter’s favorite.
God met us when we came home. He met us in school and in church, through the thoughtfulness and generosity of those who made sure we would have what we needed for a little girl who still needed extra support.
I have learned in the waiting to take one breath at a time, one moment at a time, one step at a time. While our daughter has come a long way, and the intense crisis has passed, there is still a measure of waiting to see what the long term effects of the injury will be. When the waiting seems too much, I remind myself of God’s faithfulness, and to seek His presence.
About the Author
Amanda Waters is a former journalist-turned-librarian, and author of the novel You Again. She writes stories about relationships, and loves finding beauty in the ordinary. She’s a midwestern girl currently living in Houston, Texas with her husband and their two children. When she’s not writing, you can find her outside, reading, drinking way too much coffee, or playing endless games of UNO and Go Fish. You can find links to her book, newsletter, or social media at www.amandawatersauthor.com.
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