I’ve always been a little more on the quiet side. Maybe it’s part personality, maybe part upbringing. I am an observer. I am a natural leader, but only when I feel there is no one better (and this isn’t a feeling I often have) will I assert myself into that title. I’d much prefer to train someone in an area that I am gifted in than to assume a position more permanently myself. I wait and I watch people. All the time.
I used to wonder why I was like this, why my personality is hyper aware and sensitive and observant. Why I was so cautious. I used to become easily frustrated at my tendency to wait and watch. It can be a struggle to be so mindful. Sometimes I miss out on events or in relationships. My ideas and thoughts are not always noticed or valued because of my more cautious personality. I wouldn’t assert my opinion or wants or needs. I’d wait. I’d pray. I’d hope someone would see my diligence and hard work, my thoughtfulness and care and giftedness.
I waited and watched for years, struggling between the crux of what I knew I could do and how little I was noticed for my potential in many capacities. I flourished in college as a leader. I am good at many things. I have an assortment of gifts and skills. My truest personality came out of a long season of waiting. In the last couple of years as well, my personality has come out even more. I am a bit silly and playful. I can be loud and speak off the cuff. It’s as if it’s taken such long seasons of quietly waiting to build a bit of internal security within my own soul. I’ve learned that it’s also true that I am more cautious, more slow to open up, and I wait and observe in relationships with others before I engage or I pursue. Waiting has long since been a natural part of my life. I wanted to have a more charismatic personality. I wanted to be a charming orator. I am, in many ways, but not in the ways I would have imagined.
Waiting, long stretches and seasons full of waiting, has nurtured and birthed some of the truest, most authentic parts of my heart and focus in life. And it is those parts that I am starting to focus most on, those specific pieces of my personality and gifts that have been given uniquely to me. Waiting has matured an area inside of my once restless heart that has set me free to be who I am and not who others need me to be and not what the pressures around me communicate I should be. Waiting has stilled my heart enough to allow me to hear that still, small voice calling me into that very next thing, whatever it happens to be.