Finally, base housing was available and we could move out of the tiny apartment that cost more than our housing allowance. We packed up all our belongings, loaded our nine-month old and two-year old into their car seats and headed to the base. The snow was only a couple feet deep, but the promised help from the squadron hadn’t shown up.
Everything in me wanted to be in charge: to order help to my home, to delay the deployment a few more days, to share Christmas day with my whole family.
This time in my life was circling in my head as I wrote these words in The Warrior’s Bride: Biblical Strategies to Help the Military Spouse Thrive:
“Do you believe God knows everything? Do you trust that He only wants what is best for you? These are tough questions that I tend to wrestle with during those times when my life is interrupted with a problem. But all other issues aside, if God really knows everything and He only wants what is best for me, then why do I fight being obedient?
“Sometimes I think like Jonah. God showed up in Jonah’s life, and He gave very simple instructions: go to Nineveh and preach (Jonah 1:1–2). After trying to run away and earning three days in the belly of a huge fish for his effort (verse 17), Jonah finally presents himself in Nineveh and delivers God’s message (Jonah 3:3–4). Then, instead of rejoicing at the repentance going on throughout town, Jonah is furious when God shows compassion (chapter 4).
“Occasionally when God does not meet my expectations, I throw grand tantrums like Jonah. I act like God doesn’t always have my best interests in mind. Deep in my heart, I conclude that every once in awhile, God ignores me, forgets about me, or simply lets something slip by that ultimately causes me more harm than good. After all, how can God honestly tell me that it is in my best interests to unpack that house with a toddler and preschooler underfoot while my husband searches for bombs in a danger zone half a world away?”
Can you relate to that? Do you ever wonder, “What is God thinking?”
Sometimes, I just don’t know.
I do know that I can look back on difficult moments in my life, and frequently I can identify good things that followed. I know I grew spiritually, emotionally, and mentally stronger during those times and I believe every moment is working together to both finish the work God wants to do in me and bring Him great glory.
But sometimes, that doesn’t help in the moment.
In the moment, I want to be in charge, making the decisions, and watching things happen the way I think they should.
At least until the emotions subside and I remember I serve a good God. A God who loves me and only wants what is best for me.
But God’s not finished. He’s waiting around to be gracious to you.
He’s gathering strength to show mercy to you.
God takes the time to do everything right—everything.
Those who wait around for him are the lucky ones.
Isaiah 30:18 (The Message)
The Warrior’s Bride released on eBook last week, and the paperback releases in just three weeks! To read the opening chapter, click here.
If you’d like to receive these twice-weekly blog posts in your inbox, click here.
If you’d like to receive my newsletter with all the latest news on my books, click here. The next one is coming out this week!