There is an old saying that God answers prayers in three ways: Yes, No, and not yet. As one can imagine, when asking straight forward requests, my 5 year old inner child responds in expected ways to these answers. Excitement, disappointment, and confusion, respectively. Not Yet is an interesting answer.
Immediately questions that cast doubt on my initial request come to mind:
Did I ask something wrong?
Have I done something wrong?
Am I not ready for some reason?
Do I need to change something?
I poke to see if I can get more information:
What if I ask for the same thing in a different way?
What if I ask for more or less?
What if I change in some way?
Regardless, I often get silence.
Not yet, is just that. Not yet. My solace comes from imagining a parent who loves their child saying, “not yet.” Or rather Gregory Hines in the middle of one of his solos, as the audience begins to applaud, yelling out, “Not yet!! Not yet!!” He would follow up with, “Soon…”
Delayed gratification. Wait for it.
These answers, when considered to come from the root of Love change my perception. Not Yet doesn’t come with a sting of blame, but rather with encouragement to continue on the path I’m on.
I wonder how many of us have had moments in these past weeks of Not Yet?
If the answer is Not Yet, then keep going. Keep moving in the direction you’re pointed. Keep asking questions. Keep caring about the path. Keep wondering. Keep doing the work. You’re doing fine. Just keep going.