The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.
Do you ever wonder what the disciples did during the days between Jesus’ death and resurrection? Yes, we know they went into hiding, but can you really blame them? They just watched their best friend be brutally murdered by a group of jealous religious leaders. Of course, they were scared in the midst of their grief. But what did they do while they were waiting? In the quiet moments of their fear, grief, and remembrance.
The same question can be asked of us. What do we do in the waiting? While we are waiting for Jesus to answer our prayers, to speak clearly to us, to deliver us through a situation. For me, the waiting period can be very excruciating. I struggle with wanting everything right now, but recently, God has been working on my heart in this area. As He gently does with me, He whispered to my heart one day, “Sarah, while you wait, praise Me. While you wait, seek Me. While you wait, trust Me.”
Praising God takes the focus off self and puts it back on Him. With God as the focal point of my thoughts, the waiting becomes easier. Why? Because my self-centered agenda has been pushed back to allow His greatness to shine through. And oh, how my heart becomes settled as I praise His mighty Name, as I recall all of the ways He has been faithful to me in the past. Psalm 150 tells us to “praise Him for His powerful acts; praise Him for His abundant greatness…Let everything that breathes praise the Lord.” We can praise Him in the waiting because He is still God no matter the circumstance and giving Him praise aligns our hearts with His. Praise Him with your words, praise Him through your song, praise Him through your dance…just praise Him!
“So I say to you, keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be open to you.” (Luke 11:9) Did you catch that repetition? Keep asking, keep searching, keep knocking. Seeking God is not a one-time deal. To fully seek Him, we must continuously do so. Dive into His word. Ask Him to reveal to your heart the things of His heart. Ask boldly for the desires of your heart to align with His. As you do so, the waiting becomes about connecting with the heart of the Father, seeking His will above our own. There is comfort here. Sitting, seeking, being intentional in finding out what His plan is. Jeremiah 29:12-13 says, “You will call to Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jesus is there with you in the waiting, seek Him.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5) Waiting does not always make sense to our finite human minds, and that is okay. There are many things we will not understand this side of heaven, which is why Proverbs 3:5 is so comforting. I know that I cannot always rely on my own understanding, and this is where trusting the Lord comes into play. I can trust Jesus because He is trustworthy. It is who He is and always will be. He does not change. He is constant. Here my heart can be firmly planted. Here my waiting begins to make a little more sense because I know the lover of my soul has me in the palm of His hand. I can trust Him because His word tells me to cast all my cares, my anxieties on Jesus because He cares for me (1 Peter 5:7). The Creator of the Universe cares for me and He cares for you. Let that truth take root in your heart and mind.
As you wait, praise God. “My heart is confident, God, my heart is confident. I will sing; I will sing praise.” (Psalm 57:7). As you wait, seek Him. “For I know the plans I have for you – this is the Lord’s declaration – plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11) As you wait, trust Jesus. “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. (Isaiah 26:3)
My precious husband, Bill, and I have been planted in Fort Myers, Florida for almost 35 years. As a newly married couple, God most graciously had placed people in both of our jobs to share Christ with us. Its hard to believe it has been almost 34 years since we asked Jesus into our hearts! Bill and I have been blessed with four children, 3 daughters, then a son. These blessings came quickly, all within 6 years!! During these years I'm so thankful I was able to be part of women's ministry classes at our church, helping me to grow in my walk with Him. Then came the day when I was asked that question that stretched me way outside of my comfort zone...will you teach a class? Its hard to believe that I have now been teaching more than 20 years. Bill and I love to travel, most of the time going to visit our 9 grandchildren, oh ya, and their parents! I also love reading, walking and hanging out with some very special young moms in Beloved that bless my socks off!
Julie is a Kansas girl who resides in sunny Southwest Florida. She's been married to her husband Sean for 23 years and they share two boys ages 21 & 17. She enjoys baking and biking, but her absolute favorite thing is snow skiing which is a little difficult to do in a sandy 80 degree land.
She became a follower of Christ at age 10. She loves studying and teaching God's Word. She has a passion for encouraging moms to love and follow Jesus.
Beth grew up in a loving home; however, in her early 20s she faced a very lonely time. During that time, she cried out to God and asked “If You are real, please show yourself to me!” God met her where she was and she trusted in the Lord Jesus at that time. Her life verse and desire is “no matter what happens, to conduct herself in a manner worthy of the gospel.” Philippians 1:27
Beth now resides in Tampa, Florida with her husband Larry. The Lord has blessed them by blending their family of five children. They currently have eight grandchildren and are hoping that there will be more grandchildren in the future.
Donna accepted Jesus as her Savior at the age of nine and has been amazed at God’s goodness and faithfulness throughout her life. She has been blessed to have had many mentors through each season of life, who have shown her what trusting God looks like. Donna and her husband, Bryan, make their home in central Arkansas. They have five grown children and are grandparents to wonderful grandchildren. Donna enjoys spending time with her family, laughing with friends (usually over coffee), going for long walks with her husband, and reading a good book (which may also be accompanied by a cup of coffee).
Sarah is a true Florida Cracker. She was born and raised in Southwest Florida. At the age of 6, Sarah accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior, and she hasn't looked back since. Hebrews 13:8 is one of her favorite verses, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." Eating delicious desserts, spending time with her family and friends, and teaching people about Jesus are a few of the things she enjoys to do in her spare time.
Sarah has been married to her best friend and husband, Brandon, for 7 years. They have been blessed with one beautiful, determined son, Asher, who keeps them on their toes. Sarah and her family live in the Tampa area. They love exploring their community together, family hugs, and eating pizza whenever possible.
Katie Flint just recently moved back home to Fort Myers, Florida with her husband, Ryan and two children, Collins and Madden. At the age of 5, Katie accepted Jesus Christ to be the Lord and Savior of her life, after attending Vacation Bible School. Through each phase of her life, God has shown her that He alone is trustworthy. The verse that has been her life source is Psalm 46:10- “Be still and know that I am God.”
She is a stay-at-home mom and enjoys exercising and baking. She has been married to her husband Ryan for almost 9 years, who is her high school sweetheart. They enjoy trying new restaurants, family trips to the beach, and relaxing at home.
Marsha grew up in a small rural town in upstate New York. In 2006, after finishing college, she moved to sunny SW Florida where she met her, now husband, Shawn. Together they enjoy spending family time with their two fun-loving toddler boys Zachariah and Kairos.
Marsha enjoys living an active lifestyle, which is helpful, considering that her favorite hobby is baking.
Though she attended church as a child, Marsha was not saved until adulthood when her eyes were finally opened to the love and mercy of Jesus Christ.
Since being saved, God has placed a loving burden on her heart to share the truth about God’s healing grace with those who may feel like forgiveness is not possible for them.