I’ve known this wonderful lady for about 9 years, but I wish I’d known her longer! Our friendship has grown a lot since we first met and she has become one of my dearest friends and prayer warriors. I know that at any moment, I can ask her to pray and she will. She has encouraged my heart in so many ways, but her trust in the Lord is what stands out to me the most. Her words are even more special to me because I see her living them. Thank you so much, Jinna, for sharing your story and for being such a Godly example and friend to me!
Patience. Everyone says patience is a virtue. Everyone also says never pray for patience. In general terms, I am not a patient person. My husband likes to call me “the sauce all over it” person. You know when you go to a restaurant and order something new that comes with a sauce on the side. I am the type of person that will pour that sauce all over the food before I taste it. My husband is more of the type of person who is a little more cautious and will try one small bite first to make sure he likes it. If I get an idea in my head that I want to do, I tend to jump right in before thinking it through. My husband, again, is a little more cautious.
Patience is something that Jesus has spent a lot of time working in my heart about over the 25 years He has been in my life. We love to sing the song “Trust and obey for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus than to trust and obey.” It’s an easy song to sing but a little harder to practice in our lives. This idea of waiting…trusting…obeying…having patience has changed over the years for me in my walk with Christ.
The very first time was trusting that Jesus loved me and forgave me for my sins when I was a 9-year-old church bus kid at VBS. I was a sinner undeserving of His grace but He loved me enough to send His Son to die for my sins so I could have fellowship with Him.
Psalm 27:1 “The LORD is my light and my salvation;…”
Trusting that God knew my name and cared about me when my home life was turbulent and uncertain.
Psalm 27:5 “For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.”
Trusting and obeying Him when I knew He wanted me to go to a Christian college and almost everyone around me was discouraging me from it.
Psalm 27:1 “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”
Trusting and obeying when God told me I needed to start a career teaching high school math instead of going to graduate school to study statistics.
Psalm 27:8 “When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.”
Waiting again when the loneliness crept in and threatened to overcome my joy.
Psalm 27: 6 “And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.”
Obeying when I was tempted by a man who did not have my best interests at heart.
Psalm 27:7-8 “Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me. When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.”
Patience when the man God intended for me had enough wisdom to give us time to build a relationship before we got married.
Psalm 27:4 “One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple.”
Trusting when I was told at 15 weeks pregnant that my first child was at risk for a chromosomal abnormality.
Psalm 27:9 “Hide not thy face far from me; put not thy servant away in anger: thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation.”
Waiting and trusting when I was caring for a husband recovering from 2 surgeries, taking care of 2 precious children under 2, and running a growing business.
Psalm 27:13 “I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.”
Having patience when the risks of running a business were high and the pressure was intense.
Psalm 27:7 “Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me.”
Trusting that God ALWAYS knows best. This season of life that I am currently in is a little different. Having patience with caring for a 7-year-old, 5-year-old, 3-year-old, and a 9 month old. Trusting that one day all the laundry will get done, the toys will be picked up, and my car won’t always have a weird smell. Having patience while managing employees, caring for children, and ministering to families. Trusting that it’s ok to say no to different activities to keep my priorities in line. Waiting on the Lord while we work on a large renovation at our business to minister to more families. Waiting on the Lord to answer my prayer of saving and changing my daddy’s life.
Waiting is hard. It’s even harder when you don’t know what you are waiting for. But all God asks us to do is trust. Trust that He knows best. Wait for His best. Obey even if the world tells you not to. God is faithful, and I have seen it over and over again in my life. I did not see it during the trials. As a young teenager, I wasn’t fully aware of God’s grace covering me, but I can look back and see again and again how He protected me from harm. How He prevented me from making bad decisions. How He allowed me to learn from making bad decisions. As a young adult, I was learning more of waiting. Waiting to figure out God’s will for my life, like it was some mystery He was hiding from me. It took me years to figure out His will for my life was to just trust Him. Not to know what the next 5 years of my life holds, but to follow Him day by day. Obey Him. Honor Him. Love Him by loving others. Sometimes just by being still and trusting that He is God and I am not.
“But we never can prove
The delights of His love,
Until all on the altar we lay;
For the favor He shows,
And the love He bestows,
Are for them who will trust and obey.
Trust and obey
For there’s no other way
To be happy in Jesus
But to trust and obey.”
-John H. Sammis
Psalm 27:13-14 “I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.”
Jinna and her husband own Sweet Peas Learning Center in NW Georgia. They have 4 small children and are active in their church. They have a heart for families and children, and with the Lord’s help, are making a difference in the community around them.