When You Feel Stuck in Limbo

life unstuck intro

I wanted to fast forward through the season.

Christmas was over, and winter settled in whether we were ready for it or not. The only reminder of life was an occasional bird who hadn’t migrated south.

My husband and father-in-law had just driven cross-country on a sheet of ice in record-breaking temperatures. Chris said it was the only time the inside of his nose literally froze when he stepped outside to fill up the tank with gas.

We were in state of limbo for months, living with my in-laws while waiting for our previous home to rent. In eager expectation for this next phase of our lives, we looked for houses near my husband’s new job.

But every time our hopes would rise as we anticipated good news, we’d hear, “Not yet. Not this time. Keep waiting.”

I didn’t know what God was trying to teach me in all of this. We were stuck. I hesitated to make friends, knowing we’d be moving over an hour away.

When we visited new churches, we left immediately after service, not trying to connect with anyone or build community. The snow on the ground was a reflection of my spiritual life- it felt dead, and I didn’t know what to do to revive it.

I held on to relationships with friends thousands of miles away like a lifeline. I wondered if we’d made a mistake, if we’d heard God wrong when we decided to make such a life-altering decision.

season of limbo

One of the biggest lies the enemy of our souls tells us is that God can’t use our current season for good.

Because after all, how can all this pain and heartache bring beautiful? How can months spent waiting on God to act and move not be wasted?

Often, instead of growing in our faith and pressing into our Savior, we become stuck. We refuse to seek God through the season of discouragement and are bitter.

If you are in a season of limbo, here are four things I encourage you to do:

  1. Pray. Ask God what he’s trying to teach you in all of this. Often, God uses interruptions to refocus our attention on him and areas of our lives we’ve been neglecting.
  2. Redirect. If God revealed an area you’ve been neglecting during your time in step one, spend this time focusing more attention on this part of you life.
  3. Reflect. Remember seasons like this one from your past and how God faithfully brought you through them.
  4. Surrender. No matter how much we try to control our situation, there is really only one person who is ultimately in control. And he’s not of this world.

When Easter came I was reminded how much Jesus gave up as he hung there on the cross, being ridiculed by the same people who waited hundreds of years for a Messiah. I knew what God was asking me to do, but I hesitated.

I wanted control, but deep down I knew I never had it.

We will continually live our lives stuck until we surrender our plans to the One who can move mountains. I had to turn over the reigns to Him.

In early summer of 2011, we moved into our home. It wasn’t the first place we picked or a move-in ready choice. It required love, care and paint.

But it was perfect for our family. And it was well worth the wait.

 

*Linking up with Suzie Eller’s #LiveFreeThursday

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6 thoughts on “When You Feel Stuck in Limbo

  1. I’m so glad your home was worth the wait, Abby. I can see in this post how much God taught you through a difficult season in life. And now you are passing on this insight to us. Isn’t that something how God uses the deepest valleys to teach us the deepest lessons? Love this line – “We will continually live our lives stuck until we surrender our plans to the One who can move mountains.” I need that reminder every day. And to believe and trust that He indeed does have the power to move mountains.

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  2. Abby,
    Just know I plan to read along with you each day…we’ll see if I can comment on each as well?? I’ll do my best…Ahhh…the Land of Limbo. Been there many times. Not quite sure why every time I find myself there I have to wrestle a bit with God until I finally surrender to His plans, His timing?? Waiting is hard, but when we can trust Love’s heart, it is always worth the wait! Wonderful post…love your insights!
    Blessings,
    Bev

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  3. Oh, Abby, the winter metaphor. You took me there with you. I’m originally from the Ohio/Michigan area and I felt such a despair in the months of January, February, and portions of March every year. I live in North Carolina now, so that phenomenon is much less, but the waiting…. The patience in the limbo as we hang onto hope…it’s really tough. Your steps are wonderful and very true. Thanks for this beautiful piece today!

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    • Thanks so much for your encouragement today, Meg! Yes, I’m originally from SC so it took me a while to get used to the cold. 🙂 I do enjoy having distinct seasons though. Have a great weekend.

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    • Thanks for your kind words today, friend! Yes, those periods of limbo are often rough, but oh how he teaches us if we let him. Blessed to see you here today. #LiveFree!

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