Lost – Day 11: The Holding Pattern


Going in circles is an interesting phenomenon.  We can physically walk/run in them.  We can verbally talk or mentally think in them.  And we can even live our lives in them.  I think though going in circles for the most part has a negative connotation especially when no purpose is being served by going through them. But that’s the key word…purpose.  If you knew that going in a circle would eventually lead you to a place of growth, is it still a negative thing?  Can going in a circle have purpose?

The concept of a holding pattern in aeronautics is a great analogy for this.  In aviation, holding is a maneuver designed to delay an aircraft already in flight while keeping it within a specified airspace.  So the aircraft is in a holding pattern waiting for the clear to land.  The spiritual connection is this…When and How does God uses holding patterns in our lives?

This blog is about my lost journey and nothing makes us feel lost more than walking to a destination and realizing you’ve past the exact landmark more than once.  Clearly you are walking in circles and are lost.  But being lost is a perspective and your perspective is all based upon what you think life is about and how God relates to us.  I believe that God uses holding patterns as well as red lights, green lights all the time in our lives.  So going in a circle or being in a holding pattern isn’t a negative thing when God is in control no matter why he chooses to create them.  I mean is God purifying you a negative thing?  You may not like the process (no one does btw), but it should not be looked at as a problem.

For me, right now I emphatically believe God has placed me in a holding pattern.  Now comes the tricky part….doubt.  Sin wants control and it wants to run the show.  Sin within us wars with not being able to appease the pressures in life in some way.  So Satan comes and riles it up every opportunity he can.  He whispers to you the questions of whether this is of God.  He whispers to you whether you are allowing opportunities from God to pass you by.  Basically, he questions your entry point into the holding pattern, whether you should even be in a holding pattern at all, and whether you’ve missed the exit opportunity.  Ingenious.  Satan’s goal: Sow the seeds of doubt to prevent the process from continuing and disrupts God plan.  But what’s even funnier, is that God needs those seeds of doubt to occur because it’s apart of the process.  God wants and allows Satan to tempt you away from what He needs you to do.  This tests your trust.  When I think these things, the reason I fall is because on some level I don’t trust God enough to allow the process to continue.  Throughout the day, I talk to God at least once about this problem.  “God, I trust that even in my weakness that you are in control.  If I am indeed missing your leading or not seeing your hand because of my own blindness, that I TRUST that you have all power to work it out in spite of me.  My heart’s desire longs to follow you, so the purity of my heart should outweigh the sin of fear and blindness that overshadows it.”  The pressure of life and our culture says that me being at home with no job, no kids, and not looking for a job is wrong, unwise, irresponsible, lazy, a waste of abilities and gifts, not a good steward, taking advantage of your husband and just plain ol doesn’t make sense.  Base on that God can’t be in apart of that mess.  But why though?  Why is the assumption that what I am doing is not of God?

It’s fear.  The fear of by me making and enacting these decisions that I could cause future outcomes that are unfavorable.  Let’s get one thing straight.  Who do you put your trust in?  You or God?  The fact that you live comfortably right now is that because of your responsible decisions to become educated, find a good job, and manage your money reasonably well?  If you focus on you and what you’ve accomplished to create the results you are now recouping, then yes, I understand why you could see my choices as those negative things listed above.  But I now see things differently.  I no longer put myself in the position of God aka controller of my life.  My choices and decisions should be guided by God on the front end, not after the fact by asking Him to bless something I’ve already chosen to do.  It indeed is one of the scariest positions to be in not because the fear is greater, but that fear is more out in the open.  The fear is the exact same when you choose to move without God and it’s the fear that causing you to move.  You are just moving ahead to quiet the fear in a hurry rather than allowing the fear to stare you in the face for some unknown amount of time.  How many stories in the bible are there of someone letting fear run the show because of temptation from Satan says that you need to make it happen and stop letting time past?  Dang near every story someone is being affected this way!

If Satan can’t prevent you from entering the holding pattern, he for sure will make a ridiculous attempt to get you to want to exit before God reveals to you the exit door.  All of these negative thoughts surrounding being in this holding pattern of my life are centered around this.  Do I trust God that He can work in spite of me?

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