Trusting God in a Season of Waiting

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Transformational Prayer and Healing

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void. . . . And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.” —Gen. 1:1–4 (King James Version).

A myriad of generations grew up with an understanding of God as our Creator. God, or the idea of the existence of a God, is so vast and complex that scientists debate and look for proof. Many people doubt and ask: How could a benevolent God exist when there is so much hatred and turmoil in the world today? If God exists, why doesn’t He or She stop bad things from happening to good people? 

Too often, we simplify our understanding of God as an entity—a Creator. If something can be created and later becomes broken, it can be fixed or healed. Sadly, however, something broken cannot always be fixed, and consequently, like Christ on the cross, we feel God has forsaken us. We stand in the darkness of pain, suffering, and grief, desperately grasping to once again see the Light: to once again breathe, hope, laugh, love, and feel joy. Not only do we long for healing, we need to heal—heart, body, and soul—as individuals, families, and nations.

I am neither a biblical scholar on the topic of prayer, nor am I a scientific researcher of the physical benefits of prayer. I am a seeker, trying to understand close encounters I have experienced with the Divine. I have had questions most of my life. Why do my spiritual sensibilities seem out of sync with my upbringing in a nondenominational Christian church? Why do I feel a presence calling me to serve? Why am I being haunted by the healing lyrics of a particular song on the radio every time I get in the car? How do I know if the inner voice speaking to me is divine intervention, my own inner monologue, or enemies of the Light? Where is God’s voice when I need it most?

I have suffered the unexpected loss of a spouse, cared for a dying parent in hospice, felt rejection and heartbreak in a relationship, and known the regret of making poor decisions and their consequences. I’ve had my fair share of being alone in the darkness shouting Why did this have to happen? or pleading Please take away this pain! In those prayerful moments of accepting that I am broken and feeling that I have lost control, my season of healing begins. 

You may call it “prayer.” Some call it “affirmation” or “positive karmic intention.” I call it “talking to God.” Drawing upon the strength of a power greater than myself helps me focus on what matters in the moment, reduces my anxieties, gives me hope, and “restoreth my soul,” as David so aptly describes in the twenty-third psalm. Prayer helps me be more mindful of messages sent from God to help me find my way out of the dark, like the spoken ministries shared in a recent Friends meeting I attended. Sometimes it takes a tap on the shoulder from God to remind us that we’re not alone. Healing is not done in isolation; it is done in community with the support of family, friends, and God.

I have a small plaque in my bedroom that I read every night to remind me to wait: to be patient for healing. I need the reminder because patiently waiting is not in my nature.

I once prayed for patience. For several weeks thereafter, it seemed every day, multiple times a day, my patience was put to the test. I even began to get impatient waiting for God to miraculously grant my request. Then one day, I realized the tests were God’s way of forcing me to practice and hone my patience skills. Since then, I have gotten better but still struggle with impatience, especially when it comes to emotional and spiritual healing. 

Sometimes, God is quite clear in answering our prayers. When I had doubts about the man I was in a relationship with and subsequently married to for 30 years, I prayed, “God, I don’t think this is what I want. Would you send me another?” God did not hesitate. I heard an assertive and somewhat frustrated message, “I don’t care if this is what you want; this is who you need.” This divine intervention has had a lifelong impact on me and has also been thoughtfully useful to others I have shared it with over the years. Scripture tells us that God wants to meet our needs and our heart’s desire. However, sometimes what we want simply is not possible or what is best for us. 

Other times, God answers in slower or more surprising ways. You may have experienced finding a doctor that finally was able to diagnose a health issue. You may have made a difficult decision to go forward in a particular direction, only to have obstacles put in your way that prompted you to alter your course. God doesn’t work in our time, so we need to be patient and wait for the right answers and for obstacles to be removed. Our prayers could be limiting what we need for healing. We have no view of what’s to come. God may be saying, “If you wait, I have more and better for you.” 

The past 18 months have been—and continue to be—a season of healing from the unexpected loss of my spouse. With one phone call from the ICU, my life was forever changed. My heart was broken. In the weeks and months that followed, I felt an emptiness and dull ache. I just wanted the pain to go away. I prayed but felt God was not listening and I began to question my faith. I didn’t realize it at the time, but while I waited God was working behind the scenes for my good and benefit.

Expectantly waiting doesn’t preclude us from seeking out new activities, relationships, or opportunities that could help in our healing or in finding purpose in our pain. Slowly I began my quest to seek out a purpose, to leave behind my pain (if only for a little while) so that I might serve others. I began to refresh my interests in creative endeavors l had long ago set aside, like writing, playing the piano, and networking with friends and work colleagues. I began refreshing my Spanish-language skills, walking more and eating less (or at least healthier). I forced myself to do things I enjoyed doing with my late husband, like going out to dinner and the movies. I even bolstered the courage—at the age of 72—to do stand-up comedy on open-mic nights. My community of people who cared about me stood by me, encouraged me, and loved me. I began to see the Light and feel relief from the pain. Laughter came back into my heart, and I began to feel more joyful than I had in years. 

There is no equation or set of variables we can use to measure, schedule, or forecast our healing progress. We all heal from pain and sorrow in our own time. Emotional and spiritual healing is not scientific; it is divine. When we trust God in a season of waiting, we open ourselves up to healing. When we are healing, we nurture our spiritual growth. Growing in spirit brings peace, hope, and transformation.

Rebecca Lucas

Rebecca Lucas is a freelance writer and retired corporate-training and process-improvement consultant. She lives in Elgin, Ill., and is currently attending Downers Grove (Ill.) Meeting. The author wishes to give special thanks to her faith-based grief counselor, Sheri Mueller of Blair Counseling in Elgin, Ill. Contact:

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