Waiting Or Procrastinating?

How do we know if we are obediently waiting for God's timing, or if we are avoiding the new thing He has called us to do? I've learned three principles to know the difference between waiting and procrastinating.“I’m waiting for God’s timing on that.”  Have you said that before?  I know I have.  Usually with a martyr’s sigh and the back of my hand to my forehead, ready to swoon with exhaustion from …. doing nothing.

Many times we truly are waiting on God before moving forward.  We wait for Him to prepare us for a big assignment.  We wait for Him to unlock a door.  We wait for God to make it clear it is time for a change.  We wait. And we wait.  And it is good.

But sometimes, we use “waiting” an an excuse … as a euphemism for procrastinating. The challenge God has put in front of us is so big, so audacious, that we just can’t wrap our heads around it. It’s so complicated and needs such focus it will take super-human effort to do it right.  So we wait.  And we wait.  And it is procrastinating.

So how do we know the difference?  How do we know if we are obediently waiting for God’s timing, or if we are avoiding the new thing He has called us to do?  I’ve learned three principles to know the difference between waiting and procrastinating.

Waiting renews your strength.  Procrastinating saps your energy.

Wait for the Lord; be strong, take heart and wait for the Lord. Psalm 27:14 (NIV)

When God calls us to a time of waiting, it’s not for a time of doing nothing.  He has a purpose when He is preparing us. Preparation strengthens and equips, making us stronger and more committed to the dream.  We know we will be ready when the time comes!  But procrastination is draining.  When we know there is something we should be doing, seriously y’all, doing nothing is more exhausting than doing anything.

Waiting inspires hope.  Procrastinating instills dread.

I wait for the Lord; my whole being waits, and in his word, I put my hope. Psalm 130:5 (NIV)

God-ordained waiting brings a hopeful excitement. Something big on the horizon is going to change everything and because God is in it, we know it is worth the wait.  Procrastination brings a burdensome dread.  Something is not getting done; an opportunity is being missed.  If we don’t get up and do what God has called us to do, the loss will be crushing.

Waiting focuses on God.  Procrastinating focuses on me.

Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desires of our heart. Isaiah 26:8 (NIV)

When God asks us to wait, He asks us to trust Him. He knows when the time is right and we turn to Him before we move right or move left so that He will be honored by our steps.  The fear of failure will cause us to put things off, being more concerned about how we will look than how God will move.

Waiting can be a productive time of refreshing, preparing and drawing closer to God.  But when God says, “Go”, it’s time to jump in with our whole heart, all of our energy and a trust that knows even if we fail, God’s got our back.

Respond

Are you in a time of waiting or procrastinating?  Which of the three principles helps you sort it out?

Resources

Taming the To-Do List: How to Do Your Best Work Every Day by Glynnis Whitwer

For more helpful resources and discounts on my business and ministry coaching services, join the Do A New Thing Newsletter!

This week, I am linking up with Sue Detweiler at #LifeGivingLinkup, Kelly Balarie/Abby McDonald at #RaRaLinkup#WomenWithIntention, Suzie Eller at #LiveFree, Susannah Kellogg at #FaithandFellowship, Susan Mead at #DanceWithJesus and the #OldieButGoodie Linkup, Kelly Balarie at #RaRaLinkup, with Holley Gerth at #CoffeeForYourHeart, with Natalie Venegas at Salt & Light, with Susan B. Mead at #DanceWithJesus, with Arabah Joy at Grace & Truth

33 thoughts on “Waiting Or Procrastinating?

  1. Christa, I absolutely love the wisdom tucked into these three statements. I have never thought of waiting like this before. But when I look back, each one is so true. And thank you for giving us Scripture to back up each truth.

    Congratulations on your new beginning!! It’s so exciting when God does a “new thing” in our walk with Him. I pray He blesses you with many, many more messages filled with such rich wisdom!!

    Blessings,

  2. Christa,
    I think this is my 1st time here so I’m glad to connect. When God 1st placed the seed of starting a blog in my spirit, I methodically did my research. I prayed about names, the vision, the direction, etc… It all sat in a notebook for over 3 years as I waited on God. Then one day I was talking to a friend about waiting on God to launch the blog and He gently whispered, “Don’t pin that on me. Tyra, I’m waiting on you.” OUCH! Now I am positioning myself to wait in expectation so that I’m ready to move when He says move. Happy to be visiting from #LifeGivingLinkup

  3. Christa, so true! Procrastinating makes me dread and drains me! Waiting on the Lord is not an excuse to do nothing. Great wisdom! Thank you! 🙂

  4. What a great piece you wrote Christa,I can definitely relate to both the waiting and procrastinating.Your wisdom is like a breath of fresh air, and yes a few little bumps when I recognized some procrastination traits.

    Thank you so much for sharing.
    Can’t wait to read more.

  5. Such great points here! It’s in the waiting that God prepares us and the way for what’s next. Procrastination is us dragging our feet to say “yes” to that next step. I’ve found, though, that waiting is not idle time – it’s a time of taking steps (maybe not always in a straight line toward the next). It’s usually only after we take a step that God provides direction on the next step.

    • That is so true. Waiting gets such a bad rap. But is it so valuable if we have the right attitude towards it Thanks for stopping by, Kathryn!

  6. Hi Christa.

    Great blog! I just HAD to respond today. The very first day of your new venture! Congratulations! And it lines up perfectly with the work I’m doing on myself from Proverbs 31 online Bible study Taming the To Do List!

    Blessings on your day,

    Gail

  7. Wow, Christa. What a poignant, truth-filled post. You definitely have me thinking and evaluating some things here. I believe I’m coming out of a season of waiting into one where God wants me to move and act more. Praying about my next steps and moving forward! Thank you for this. Blessed to have you over at #RaRaLinkup today.

  8. LOVE this!! I found this post through the #LiveFreeThursday link up and I couldn’t agree more with everything you wrote. I am also doing the Taming the To Do List study right now and I am feeling so energized, moved, set free by all that I am learning. I am a life long procrastinator and have certainly used the “waiting on God” excuse before. I love the contrast you outlined and how we can determine which is which. Great stuff, sister! Keep writing!

  9. Thank you so much for sharing this! Its such an important truth I just had to share this post with my readers over on my Facebook page! Your writing is clearly anointed and I have no doubt you will have a lot of success in the blogging community. Thank you again, your blog is beginning to bud in to the most beautiful flower . Keep writing you are doing great!

  10. Wow I really like how you juxtaposed waiting and procrastinating. I had never thought of those points quite like that. Thank you for sharing and thank you for linking up with Oldie But Goodie!

  11. Christa,
    All three principles really help and hit home. What a great litmus test to determine whether I am waiting or procrastinating. I also think with procrastinating, I KNOW what I need to do, but I’m just too weary, tired, lazy, all of the above to get going on something. Procrastination can be a red flag that I need to draw my strength from the Lord and stop relying on me. Great post!
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

  12. This is great, Christa! Each of these principles is rich! I found myself audibly agreeing for each one of them. In essence, waiting and procrastinating are opposites. I think the second one, “Waiting inspires hope. Procrastinating instills dread.” is key. Not that how we feel should dictate what we do or need to be doing. But if I’m sensing dread, it’s a sure thing I’m not waiting on God. This is my favorite post for the whole week! Thanks for this.

Leave a Comment