Patience: The Art of Hallway Praising
There’s this old, crinkled up piece of paper that Brent hung up in our office a few years ago. It’s a picture of two doors: a closed one and a slightly open one with a bright light peaking through. Above that second door, it says,
"Until God opens the next door, praise Him in the hallway."
Sometimes, we find ourselves in what feels like limbo, waiting for God to move. A hallway. Sometimes, it's so dark that we can't even see a door.
I wait on the Lord, my whole being waits, and in His word I put my hope.
Seriously, waiting on God’s timing is not easy. But so often we turn patience into this strenuous exercise that wears us down until it wears us out.
Patience is about owning our time in the hallway. Choosing to praise Him when It feels like we're in limbo between where we are and where we want to be.
Moms, we need to teach our girls to reject worry and instead master the art of hallway praising.
We've had that piece of paper up for over three years now, and I always notice it. I notice it every time I leave the house. I know that's why Brent put it there. So we would see it. So we would remember what to do while we wait.
When I think back to how we started a brand new business with no experience when I was 8 months pregnant and only a couple years out of my most recent of several cancer diagnoses, I'm sure it seemed laughable to many.
I can only imagine the funny look you might have given me. Raised eyebrows, your face all scrunched up, holding your breath like, "Ohhh, Erin. Umm really? Do you think that's a good idea?"
I can see you, and honestly that would maybe have been a reasonable reaction. After all, it didn't seem like a safe choice. It didn't seem very responsible, by everyday standards. But God's standards rarely align with the world's.
Because of the beautiful way God has moved in our lives, we prepared as best we could to step out of the hallway.
I didn't necessarily feel ready when God nudged me that it was time, but I now spend quite a bit of my quiet time with Him thinking about many far away memories that still feel close, many significant moments that apart from each other seem unrelated, but together reveal a beautifully orchestrated plan for my own personal arrival to the hallway.
My childhood and never really feeling a connection to God.
My teen years and letting fear, insecurity, and self-doubt guide my thoughts, words, and actions.
My Early Twenties Rebellion, when I declared, “There is no God!” at my dad and lived the next several years in a wild, reckless tear of existence, willfully separated from any consciousness of Him.
My dark night of the soul, when I cried out for His help, protection, and deliverance from an awful, terrifying disease.
My struggle years later to accept romantic love and my resistance to accept His plan for me as a wife.
My heart slowly softening and the moment when I finally surrendered and turned back toward Him to listen.
And the miracle of bringing a life into this world after discounting completely any chance I might have to experience what it means to be called Mama.
Tip: It's memories like these that should inform how we react to a season in the hallway. Ask yourself this question: Do we wait in worry, or do we rest, anticipating but never doubting what God is going to do?
Action: Grab a journal. Sit together with your daughter and discuss what areas of her life feel like a hallway right now. Write down her thoughts. Then (Mama), lead her in a prayer that praises God for each hallway - what she is waiting for the Lord to do and the ways He wants to prepare her heart while she is waiting on Him.
Pray. “Whenever we discover that one of us is in a hallway, waiting for God to do something, we will praise. Let's wait together, listening intently for His voice. We will praise Him because, despite what we think we know about the hallway, His promises reign. His promises are true, they are good, and they do not fail."
I would love to find out how these conversations go with your girls. Let me know in the comments below!
* * *
If you’re looking for ways to encourage your daughter to learn more about how God wants her to lead, I would HIGHLY suggest you check out my recent blog post, “Three Ways to Support Your Daughter to Lead Well”. Click here to read. These topics changed my approach to motherhood forever . . .
Also, if you’re struggling to develop your daughter’s character and faith in God, check out my book series, The Adventures of Rooney Cruz. It offers a simple, five-step approach to character development that will help you overcome these challenges. We just released a brand new series devotional. You can get your copy by clicking here.