If you follow me on Instagram, you know that Robert and I are preparing to move into a new home! We are so excited to transition into more space than our 800 sq. ft. apartment has offered us the last four years and are slowly adjusting our minds to the responsibility that a home entails. (Gone are the days where we put in a request in an online system and came home to a fixed AC unit!)
We waited a while to start packing, and then three weeks before the move, I was headed to a women's retreat and I knew that if I didn't start packing, I would spend the entire weekend dreading returning home to pack. So I boxed up my books and most of the decorative items sitting around on table tops and other surfaces the night before I left. It was definitely the right decision because I barely thought about the need to pack and move the entire weekend!
Without realizing it, I also catapulted my husband and I into something unexpected; a short season of being between. As I packed those boxes, our apartment ceased to become home and became something we were leaving and moving on from.
After we received the keys to our house, our minds transitioned, our hearts opened to this new space, and we immediately wanted to begin the process of making it home. So we took things off walls, picked out paint colors, and threw ourselves into preparing it.
As I've been muddling through the process of trying to use both kitchens, packing as much as possible in one place, and preparing everything I can in the other, it has slowly dawned on me that I am in the short season of almost, but not yet. We encounter these in many areas of life, but rarely do I stop to recognize them.
Right now, there is a new place for me, where I belong. A place that is being prepared for me to dwell; a place that I can call home and call my own, but I'm not there yet. And I want to try to figure out every way possible to end this in-between. I've suggested sleeping on an air mattress in the new house. I've crunched minutes and days and hours, trying to figure out the fastest way to end this season of waiting. But there isn't anything I can do other than plod along and keep waiting.
Likewise, this earth is also a place I will one day leave. Right now, I get to live in a very short but powerful season that reminds me of what it is like to daily live with the longing for heaven. As Christians, we know that Jesus is preparing a place for us, and one day, He will return and take us to that place. We don't know the hour he will return, but until that time, we are being made more into His likeness by the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. He is continuing to call people to Himself until the day when people "from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages" (Rev. 7:9) have believed in God and can worship together at His throne.
We are dwelling in the in-between. We have been instructed to obey and keep maturing in our salvation (Phil. 2:12) and to continue daily telling others about our God so that they may come to know Him (Matt 28:16-20). There can be great joy in the waiting, but there can also be so much unrest in our souls. As Amanda Brown so eloquently put it at the women's conference that weekend I began packing: "Our hearts are not yet whole; and our bodies are not yet home."
How many times I've whispered those words to myself over the last few weeks as a sweet reminder that there is something bigger than the waiting between two earthly homes. We are waiting for our eternal home. And no longing compares to the desire to spend every day in the presences of Jesus. One day, we will.
"For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience." Romans 8:18-25
What are you waiting for in your life? What is God teaching you about Himself and His Word in the process of waiting?
Let us together, wait eagerly for Jesus.