There are many pieces of my personal testimony I readily share. Although, some hit a deeper, more tender spot requiring the Lord’s continual nudging to get me to open up. Thus, I can certainly say this is the case for the period nearly two years ago when I was homeless and living out of the backseat of my car.
Most never imagine homelessness as an obstacle they would be forced to face, especially in this day and age. With my college degree and all, I sure did not expect it either. Still in the summer of 2019, it became my reality as my health crashed and I was let go from my teaching job.
Each day, I woke up hoping and praying I would find a home or at least a little more permanent place to sleep. I would spent hour after hour on the phone or driving around Roanoke, filling out applications and being put on waiting lists. Yet, night after night, I was devastated when it got dark, again and I had nothing.
Not only did this season of life take a toll on my body, but it amplified my feelings of failure and worthlessness, too. Thus, in the waiting, I continued to wrestle as one day turned to one week, one week to one month…
Still, I will never forget one particular Saturday morning about seven weeks into my waiting journey. I woke up as usual, although as I opened my Bible, it was as if the words jumped off the page. The Lord said PRAISE.
A bazillion questions arose in my brain, especially as I had considered those words before particularly at the end of the “battle”, when the victory had already been won.
Though the Lord guided my wild wonder to worship the entire day as He amplified, “ALISHA!!! PRAISE ME FOR HOW I WILL PROVIDE”.
This reminds me of a story in Acts 16 where Paul and Silas were also in a rough situation- Jail to be exact. Though after being stripped and flogged and chained to the prison bars, it says in verse 25 the two men were PRAISING at midnight.
You see, everything was not going well in their world. They were in the middle of the valley without a way to know how long they would be chained or even if they would survive. Yet, in their waiting, they responded by PRAISING and thanking God before the answer came.
I do not know about you, but praise is not always the first thing that comes to mind when I am waiting. Actually, my response is normally just the opposite as it is often easier to start complaining.
However, PRAISE must be our first and continual response “in the waiting” because…
- Our God is WORTHY of all praise and glory and honor. As it says in Revelation 4:11, “Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and praise; for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created.”
- And… We can be EXPECTANT that He will come through. “ I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” Philippians 1:6
It may not be as dramatic as the book of Acts with the violent earthquake setting them all free by physically breaking the chains and spiritually through conversion and baptism of an entire household…
Or even in the timing we expect. As I waited eight long and challenging weeks for my phone call giving me a place to sleep…
Although, I promise friend, He will be with you in your waiting. Let’s not waste another minute to start praising.
*With this series, I will also be sharing 5 song suggestions for your praising in the waiting each week 🙂
So here are the first five:
– “While I’m Waiting” by John Waller
– “Wait on You” by Maverick City & Elevation Worship
– “Worthy Of It All” by CeCe Winans
– “Take Courage” by Kristene DiMarco
– “Midnight” by Rita Springer