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When life says not yet….

By Hannah L. Halverson

Everything around me is moving in a certain direction, but I am standing still. I’m standing face to face with my expectations. I’m staring at them as if they were suppose to be the reality. My expectations are a dream in my heart. A dream placed by God. While waiting for them to come true I hear, “not yet.”

Sometimes the not yet can feel like not ever. Waiting for God’s timing can be a painful process. Sometimes the pain of that process isn’t obvious. It becomes a search for hope. Losing hope can become a dull ache. A heaviness that follows every moment. A lingering feeling that fades into the background. The fade feels like a silence that is so loud. The pain exists. It just doesn’t have a name or a voice. Not yet.

Pain without a voice leaves me numb. And the numbness creates a space between me and God. A space full of doubt, unbelief, disappointment, devastation and frustration. But God wouldn’t have put the dream in my heart if He didn’t have a purpose for it.

I realize that the wait is more about what God is doing within me, than what I am asking Him to do for me. And in that same breath, the wait is about what God is doing in others. When my expectations are unmet, I can still pray for everything in my heart. That’s where Hope is found. When I give the pain a voice it helps me find the prayer I forgot I prayed. It helps me remember the dream I forgot I had. It keeps the focus on what God is doing to heal my heart rather than what life is doing to harm it.

In Hebrews 11:1 the Bible says that faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. In reading these words, I realize that the expectation is love. Love for myself, love for others and love for God. The distance between the dream and the reality exposes a need that can only be met by God. The absence of love causes pain. A deep pain. When I turn to God with the pain, my expectations change. Love becomes about what I am expected to give, while holding onto what I am hoping to receive. It keeps the dream alive.

I’ve prayed for dreams to come true in my marriage, with my children, with my family, and with my friendships. For some, I am still waiting. The “not yet” carries a burden of “not ever”. But my hope cannot be that my expectations are met. My hope is found in Christ. Expecting good things reveals the dream in my heart. And the space between the dream and life reveals my need for God.

The pain of the “not yet” has a purpose. And that is to find God in the space between the reality and the dream. I’m searching for Him in what I cannot see. This pain has led me to healing and through that I have found purpose. Faith has given me a confidence and an assurance that can be seen by the world. Hope restores my faith to find that love is worth the dream. Even when life whispers, “Not Yet”.

1 Corinthians 13:13

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

Hebrews 11:1

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.