On Loving and Longing

it’s Valentine’s Day next week, and the aisles at Target are working overtime to make sure we know that love is in the air, am I right? 

And does it seem like we are all collectively trying to feel light, flirty, and happy…yet know that life is truly often heavy, burdensome, and even our best days are as the Psalmist says: “but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away.” (Psalm 90:10)

I’m not trying to be a downer; I’m just telling the truth from where I’m seeing it: Love is sweet and fragrant and fun, but it also requires labor, sacrifice, and diligence. I can’t look at pink hearts without considering all the purple ones too in the trenches of life. Love and loss, love and longing…seems to always go hand in hand.

After almost 19 years of marriage and loving a husband plus six kiddos…love (the verb) and the celebration of it feels much different than it used to:

Less fluff and more foundation. Less stuff and more substance. Less heartburn, but more heartache.

Life is full of opportunities to love, feel longing or loss, and to love anyway.

I’ve been thinking on these things as Valentine’s Day approaches and GraceLaced Shoppe launched the Be Still Series this week (with a sale!) The series is about fighting chaos and the discouragement of waiting for change, with the steadying truth of God’s Word. It’s His Word that reminds us that:

He is good when He blesses and takes away. He is not through with us yet and will indeed wipe away every tear and make all things new. We can be still because He is still on the throne, even when everything is not perfectly lovely or loving.

Love and longing can sometimes feel like the same thing: Both make the heart ache and both teach us to trust what we can’t always see with our eyes. 

So maybe these verses meet you at the intersection of loving and loss, maybe they find you yearning and waiting, and maybe these verses remind you that you must just keep pressing on in love and praise because Christ is love and your life is in Him.

I hope so.

*And if these (or anything else in the shoppe) speaks to you this week, we are having a shoppe-wide sale, so enjoy the discount and free print promo through Wednesday 2/15. 

Cheering you on, friends.

Because of grace,


(Family portrait by my friend, Joy Prouty of Wildflowers Photography)


How To Wait When Waiting Is Too Much

When the hours turn in to days and the days turn into weeks and the weeks turn into months, and we fear our name will never be called in the waiting room of our life.

…to be the next one to be heard.

…to be the next one to be healed.

…to be the next one to receive resolution.

…to be the next one off the roller coaster.

…to be the next one with answers.

…to be the next one who need not return to the waiting room.

All of us Waiters begin patiently, hope-full-y, eagerly and then find ourselves at some point throwing up our hands and ready to walk out…sick of waiting. Too sick not to wait. 

Wait patiently for the LORD. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the LORD. (Psalm 27:14)

Waiting on our terms is tolerable, if not even a little satisfying, but waiting — on the Lord’s terms — can be outright terrifying, pride-stripping, and in ways we resist it: HOLY

I’m convinced that’s why we are told so much how to wait on the Lord in the God’s Word: 

Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

…why we’re reminded that not all circumstances in relationships seem fair or just…

Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices! (Psalm 37:7)

…why waiting is often in the midst of trials and suffering, through which we are being formed and transformed…

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. (James 1:12)

…and why our comfort in waiting is not dependent on our character but his, not our own stamina but on his steadfastness…

Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
    his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint,
    and to him who has no might he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary,
    and young men shall fall exhausted;
but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
    they shall walk and not faint.

(Isaiah 40:28-31)

For all that may be answered and resolved this day…and all that remains unknown and not yet uncovered: Waiting is not for those who can fix themselves, but for those of us who are desperate for only what Jesus can bring to light, what only Jesus and restore and reveal and resolve.

Friends, when the waiting room is too much and too costly, consider that your way into the inner room has already been paid in full. Remember his love for you IN the waiting, in the revealing of his purposes. Remember the desert, the 40 years, the 750 years between the death of Abraham and the birth of King David. Remember that God is the author of the story and is faithful to complete it.

I’m waiting today, holding fast to what He has already done. His faithfulness is our companion in the waiting room.

Because of grace,

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