He was having surgery. I was sitting in the waiting room. Alone. When you have no children, you don’t have instant companions when you need them most. With no parents around, I sat alone in the waiting room. Waiting for the news of the surgery.
Oh. It wasn’t life-threatening surgery. It was a repair. But surgery is surgery, and anything can go wrong when someone’s body is cut open and they’re unconscious.
At different times during the surgery, a friend would stop by to sit with me. Or check in. Or chat. It made the waiting bearable. After all, I wasn’t familiar with surgery or waiting rooms or hospitals. I had never spent time in those surroundings.
The phone in the waiting room would ring from time to time. That was the signal that a family would soon be face to face with the surgeon who had worked on their loved one. That was the sign they would soon learn their loved one’s fate. Was the surgery successful? Are they out of the woods? What are the next steps? Will they pull through? What did you find? Will it be bad news?
At times, the room was quiet. People coming and going. Families getting calls from the surgeon. Updates and diagnoses. Sometimes the atmosphere was loud. Children crying. The bustling of crowds moving through the hallways. One family, after hearing the news, knelt down in the public space and prayed. They prayed out loud for their loved one. The one who was in a fight for their life. Perhaps it was a discovery of an incurable disease. Or a brain that was no longer functioning. Or a repair that couldn’t be made. Nevertheless, they knelt right there and prayed. Prayed to a God who could hear and answer their prayers. If He chose. But they had faith. They placed the outcome of their loved one’s surgery in God’s hands and trusted Him.
When the room was noisy, I was afraid I wouldn’t hear my name called. I was afraid the loud conversations would cover the sound I was listening for. I didn’t want to miss the call from my husband’s surgeon. I wanted to hear the words. He is fine. We were able to make the repairs. He is being moved to recovery.
I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. Isaiah 43:1-2
Lately, I find myself sitting in another waiting room. A waiting season. Waiting for news. Will I get an interview? How many interviews do I have to endure? Will I get a job offer? How long must I wait to start a new job?
The waiting seems long. It seems never ending. I like to hope the end is near. There are signs that it’s possible. But one never knows. One can only hope. So I wait. I hope. I pray.
Sometimes the noise level in this waiting room is quiet. I didn’t get calls. No interest. Would I wait forever? At times the noise in my head and heart were so loud, that it was just that. Noise. Noise from Satan. Your work life is over. You’re retired. You’ll never see another good paycheck.
At times, the noise has a different sound. Multiple interview requests. Interview preparations. Nervousness. Anxiousness. A new waiting begins.
Just when I think the wait is almost over, the news comes crashing down. You weren’t selected. And the wait continues.
Waiting is difficult. Doubt creeps in and fills the space where peace had once been. Confidence becomes clouded with discouragement. Trust is eroded by waves of fear. I have to listen for the voice of the One who holds me in his hands. He hasn’t let go. He is near. I must remind myself that He hasn’t forgotten me. He knows my situation. He knows I’m waiting.
Oh. I have visitors in this waiting room. I have friends who call to check on me. I have a friend who will send me a text of encouraging scripture every so often. I know others are praying for me. I’ve heard their prayers. I’ve felt their prayers. Others will email me. I’m not forgotten. I’m not alone. I am simply waiting. If waiting is simple.
There have been times when I’ve been down on my knees. Begging God to pull me through this tough time. To provide what I need. To show me favor. To continue working for me in ways that I can’t see.
But in this waiting room, I must sit quietly so I can hear the voice that is calling my name. The voice of the One who knows my name. He speaks to me. Come closer. I will provide. You are loved. I am working for you. Be not afraid.
So I sit. And I wait. I want to hear the voice when my name is called.