It was over three years ago now that I wrote a simple meditation about waiting on the Lord entitled “In Its Time,” based on Ecclesiastes 3:11.
With so much time — and life — having elapsed since then, I had forgotten about the piece entirely. It was a surprise, then, on Holy Saturday — appropriately, a day of waiting — to begin getting messages from people all over the world, expressing how much a mere couple hundred words from my heart had touched them.
When I wrote the meditation, my husband and I had recently relocated to a new community. It was not a random move, but a prayerful decision based on where we felt the Lord was leading us.
People move for all sorts of reasons — jobs, family, opportunities. Somewhat unusually (even for Christians) we moved specifically to be part of a church, sensing the Lord’s very clear guidance.
Starting over in a new place is daunting at the best of times, but it was especially challenging for us for a number of reasons. My husband had been working remotely and the position seemed secure. However, days before our move, the business changed hands and he was suddenly laid off. He didn’t receive a severance package, and we did not have a savings cushion because we had been living on his income alone while I cared for our young kids. On moving day, we packed our two small sons into the car without knowing how we were going to provide for their needs.
Another opportunity did, thankfully, present itself — but not until two weeks after we had moved. It was quite literally a leap of faith into the unknown. We had to wait on God to provide.
Since then we have faced many more ups and downs. In the midst of every sweeping change and challenge, I’ve had to learn over and over again that my identity and worth is not defined by my income, my job title, my creative output, or the size of my audience. It’s based on who God says I am: chosen, redeemed, loved, and valuable.
Over time and as we continued to integrate into our new church community, friendships developed and opportunities blossomed. As a worship leader and songwriter, it has been a real privilege for me to serve with a stellar team of musicians and creative minds. I’ve learned and grown, and I’m excited for what’s next. But I also know that if it were all taken away overnight, God would still see me the same way, and God would still provide for my every need.
God is in the in-between, the emptiness, the Holy Saturday silence. Our dependence on God is more often forced rather than sought — and no wonder, because experiencing the depth of our need can feel incredibly painful. But dependence also opens rich depths of wonder and worship, as we see and respond to the sustaining power of eternal hope at work in our lives.
Many years ago, I heard a speaker make the powerful statement that “every cross is temporary.” He was right. Life moves through seasons, and spring always comes after winter. Even the pain and suffering inherent to this finite human existence on earth is temporary.
For now, we look to the day when the longing of our hearts for eternity is fulfilled.
But while we’re here in the waiting, God is still working.
Katie Overbeek is a worship leader and songwriter. She lives north of Toronto with her husband Josh and two young sons, Joe and Tate. You can learn more about Katie and her work here.
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