Purpose In This Place

I wrote a poem for last year’s NaPo that began, “The waiting is the hardest part.”

It was in a completely different context, but I didn’t realize how true it would end up being.

Wanting to Witness

There’s a stereotype about writers – we’re hermits who sit at our desk and type words all day. Well, I think we all know that stereotypes are rarely true; but sometimes they have a grain of reality.

Between school, Bible Bee studying, writing, and my lack of major interest in sports or drama, I don’t get out of the house all that often.

I mean, sure, I go to church, and homeschool group; but as far as interacting with people outside my group of homeschooled, church-going friends? There hasn’t been much opportunity.

…children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world… (Philippians 2:15)

This was the verse I was thinking about one day right after Bible Bee Nationals. That same evening, I started looking up job opportunities.

See, I’m a hermit not by choice.want to be involved, interacting with the culture and the world around me. But I don’t have many chances to do that.

How do you shine as a light in the world, when you’re not in the world in the first place?


I’ve been looking for a job since last December.

I’ve applied at dozens of places. I’ve even had multiple interviews. Somehow, nothing has worked out and every possibility has fallen through.

Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. (2 Corinthians 5:20)

How can you be an ambassador, when you’re stuck in your own country and all the flights are either cancelled or delayed?

Waiting and Wondering

I had an interview at Walmart, and that job is still a definite possibility; but what I didn’t foresee were the endless complications stemming from the unfortunate fact that I’m not eighteen yet (and Florida has some really strict labor laws for minors). The managers are working on figuring it out, said they’d call me when they do.

So I’m waiting. Going through my days just like usual. Pricking my ears at the sound of the telephone. Hoping against hope that this time, this phone call, will be it.

Because this, right here, right now, is not where I want to be. And I don’t understand why it’s taking so long, why all the waiting, why this continual limbo.


Somehow the topic of witnessing keeps coming up. Sunday School, Bible study, articles across the internet.

I can’t seem to get away from it. And I can’t seem to do anything about it.

I believe – strongly – that God is calling me to be a witness to the world – just like He calls all believers. But how? How, when all my attempts are frustrated? Four months of searching, and still nothing.

Recently I’ve been memorizing Isaiah 40. These verses come to mind often.

Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand,
And marked off the heavens by the span,
And calculated the dust of the earth by the measure,
And weighed the mountains in a balance
And the hills in a pair of scales?
Who has directed the Spirit of the LORD,
Or as His counselor has informed Him?
With whom did He consult and who gave Him understanding?
And who taught Him in the path of justice and taught Him knowledge
And informed Him of the way of understanding?
(Isaiah 40:12-14)

There’s something I was told by both my dad and a few good friends when this whole catastrophe began: “God will put you where you will glorify Him the most.”

And so I have to believe that God – the God who holds oceans in His hands, the God whose understanding surpasses infinitely that of the wisest man on earth – this God has put me where I am today.

And that must mean He has a purpose for me right here. I don’t understand why He would hold me back from the calling in my heart, but somehow my being in this place will work more greatly for His glory than my being anywhere else.


This isn’t where I want to be, but this is where I am. I’m still praying. I still believe I need to be witnessing. But I guess what I need to remember is to be present. Be here. Give all of myself to whatever situation I’m in right now.

Yet those who wait for the LORD
Will gain new strength;
They will mount up with wings like eagles,
They will run and not get tired,
They will walk and not become weary.
Isaiah 40:13

I’m waiting; and maybe I’ll be waiting for a while.

So I pray for the strength to rejoice.


17 thoughts on “Purpose In This Place

  1. Sometimes waiting builds character within us for what is to come next. I pray you will find your way to witnessing as God leads. I wrote a blog called waiting on God you may find helpful.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not quite in this position now, having been going to a secular college for the last four years, which gives me lots of opportunity to do all these things (and I’ve botched a lot of the opportunities, honestly, being human), but there’s so much in this post I agree with, and so much I’d like to be able to encourage you in.
    You see, in my circles, people often can’t afford college, so I’m one of the lucky ones, and rare. When families can afford to send kids to college (and keep in mind all these kids have been home-schooled right through high school, which is the way to do it), they send the boys, to get a career kind of degree. Not what education’s for, but hey, practicality. One reason given for not going to college is that it exposes you to all kinds of bad ideas and flawed worldviews. But for people at our point in life, out of high school but not yet married, is there any better mission field?
    Only so many of us don’t get that chance. We may indeed have a desire to change the world — forget the world, to change one person for the better, to go out, make that connexion, and see that one life turned into something amazing soli Deo gloria. And as you so well said it, we don’t understand why He would hold us back from the calling He put in our hearts. We have to hang on and wait.
    I have the honour of a part-time job and a full-time college load. But my calling isn’t just to be around people all the time (introvert over here needs silence once in a while). And lately, in fact, I’ve often been asking, “Lord, if you give me a desire for this thing I might do for You, why can’t I do it?”
    Perhaps the point of his post-length comment was just a sort of topsy-turvy, “I’m in the opposite place and I can tell you you’re not alone because I’m asking the same questions.”
    Also, a post on waiting, coming in the middle of Holy Week, is perfect timing if you ask me :).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you, Katherine, for sharing! I agree, waiting can be hard. I am confident that God is forming His character within you through this process, though. Even if you don’t have a lot of contact with unbelievers, I know you’re making an impact just by letting Christ flow through your life whether around your friends or through your writing.


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