Learning We Can't Shortcut the Process

My impatience has been building.  

I’m done, so done, with feeling new. I’m tired of standing knee deep in the muck of transition, trudging along to get to the place of settled. I want to be there now. I want to feel established and knowledgeable and connected.


When in the world will I arrive?


I expected to be there already. In the past few months, we moved to a new state, we moved again to a new house, my husband started a new job, my son started kindergarten, and I started a new job. Sure, that’s a lot of changes, but they are done now. We are here, in our new routine. I thought it would be simple, like walking through a hallway, opening a new door, and sitting down at a new table.


That’s not what it’s like at all. This change is not a hallway. It’s a path of muck. The transition through new is not quick or easy. It is a messy and laborious journey.


The feeling of impatience that is pushing at my insides reveals how much I have been influenced by our culture. Everything around me is instant. We DVR television shows so we can watch what we want to watch when we want to watch it. We put things on credit so we can buy them right away without having to verify that they are in the budget. We get updates on friends from social media so we don’t have to wait until we see them to find out what they’ve been doing. We pick up our food from the grocery store so we don’t have to go through the time or toil required to grow it ourselves.


We shortcut the process on just about everything.


No matter how much around us has been streamlined and shrink-wrapped into tidiness, we cannot shortcut the process of life. The human heart is a complicated emotional organism that cannot be controlled. And despite our efforts to the contrary, we will never be sovereign over how our life turns out.


Until we submit to the God who values process, we will only make our journey more difficult.


Throughout the Bible, I see verses about patience and perseverance and trust as we walk through life by faith. I don’t see anything that promises us a feeling of settled.


I wonder if this feeling of settled I long for doesn’t indicate that I’ve arrived as much as it means I’ve forgotten. This life is not all there is. I will never arrive. And with eternal perspective and God’s priorities, what is being done in me is often more important than what I am getting done. I cannot and should not shortcut the process.


This season may be difficult for my heart but it is healthy for my faith. Impatience makes my heart hungry and draws me to the Bread of Life.