Thursday, August 21, 2014

be patient

The other day at work a mother and her two young children came into the store to shop. I assisted them, let them know what our sales and promotions were and showed them around the store to the appropriate items. As time went on, an hour to be exact, I realized that this family was still in the store contemplating over two pairs of shoes for the eldest daughter who was about 8-years old. While the mom worked with her daughter on deciding what shoe was best for her to wear during school hours, her other daughter was quietly walking around the store trying to find something for herself.

Another 15 minutes passed and as the two sisters were in the back aisle still deciding which shoe would be best, mom comes over to me and quickly tosses me a cute little purse and a pair of shoes and says, "Hide these for me, they're for my youngest daughter (she was about 5). It's her birthday and she really wants these." I giggled and swiftly hid the items under the counter.

I've encountered these types of situations a lot while working at this tiny store. Parents quickly throwing (for a lack of a better word) things over the counter before their child comes running to the front of the store. It's quite a sight to see. It makes me wonder how I will be one day as a mother.

Well, another 15 minutes pass - I'm not even kidding, at this point, they have been in the store for nearly an hour and a half. Mom is exhausted because older daughter can't decide what shoe she wants and she simply just wants to take a nap. From my observations and the way my retail day was going, I wanted to take a nap too.

Finally, it's checkout time. Mom was clever, she had the girls put away the shoes they weren't buying so that she could pay for the birthday gift for the youngest. I was getting a little excited because mom kept peeking over her shoulder to make sure the girls weren't running towards the front of the store. I rang up the purse and shoes and she quickly shoved them in her purse right as her daughters were walking back. The youngest girl was swinging around a purse that she had been holding onto for all 90 minutes. She rushed over and tried to get the purse on the counter but mom had already swiped her card and the transaction was done.

Enter, tears. Waterworks. Silent screams.

"Please put the purse back where you found it."

"Yeah, but how come my sister got something and I didn't?"

"Don't worry sweetie, it's almost your birthday and you'll be getting some stuff."

~Youngest daughter crying and throwing an almost-tantrum~

"But, mom!"

"I'll be waiting right here for you. I will not tell you again, go put the purse back."

Whenever parents are correcting, disciplining or reprimanding their child, I mind my own business. I try to focus on my paperwork at the counter and completely shut out the fact that their child, at any moment, can scream, kick and holler and disrupt the entire store. But on this day, I just sat back and smiled at the little girl. I felt like I could encourage her with a smile or wave because I knew that in a few days, she would open a big box to the cute little purse she refused to put back. After a few minutes of "heartache" she digressed and angrily put the purse back and ran out of the store and in that moment I heard the Lord speak to me...

So many times, we are just like that. We are minutes, days, weeks away from receiving something we've always wanted or have been praying for and out of frustration we yell to God "Yeah, but how come my sister (friend, coworker, husband, wife, etc.) got something and I didn't?" We use the unfair card not even realizing that God has tucked away His own little blessing for us. Often times we forget that God's timing is perfect - in this situation, youngest daughter's birthday was going to be her moment to receive. We stomp out of the store with a pouting lip screaming obscenities to the clouds... all because we think life is unfair.

But if only we wait.
If only we are patient.
If only we rely on what God has supplied for us, trusting Him and knowing that our prayers haven't gone unheard or that our tears have gone unseen.

Our breakthrough comes right when we least expect it. God has a plan for our lives and some of it has not yet been revealed, they're still hiding under the register counter and God knows when we need it. God knows when to place things in our life at the right moment.

So don't fret, don't throw adult tantrums (I do sometimes). Be patient and worship while you're waiting for that blessing or answer you've been waiting on. God is for you and not against you. He loves you and has promises and a plan & purpose for your life that goes beyond your wildest dreams.

Trust in Him!

{candid photos I took of my friend's children}

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