Friday, October 7, 2022

Waiting for Hindsight

Good friend, take to heart what I’m telling you;
    collect my counsels and guard them with your life.
Tune your ears to the world of Wisdom;
    set your heart on a life of Understanding.
That’s right—if you make Insight your priority,
    and won’t take no for an answer,
Searching for it like a prospector panning for gold,
    like an adventurer on a treasure hunt,
Believe me, before you know it Fear-of-God will be yours;
    you’ll have come upon the Knowledge of God.
Proverbs 2:1-5 MSG
Waiting for hindsight is challenging. I know the value of hindsight, but I simply can't have it in my current season.

If you have been in a valley of longsuffering, you likely know this type of tension. I hate living in limbo. Not knowing how long I'll be in this place feels exhausting. It's sort of like holding a squat for a full minute rather than ten seconds - the hovering becomes painful and overwhelming.

I've been in valleys of longsuffering before. Times when I didn't know what was ahead. Times of hardship, waiting, and yearning for the pressure to release.

Then once I was out of the valley, I had valuable hindsight on the problems, situations, roots, and reasons. Everything seemed to make more sense, even if I didn't have all the answers. Hindsight provided relief, because I was no longer hovering painfully over an issue with an unknown deadline.

In this current season, I feel stuck in a hard middle with no clear end in sight. The pressure is relentless. Many people are telling me, "I just don't know how you're doing it."

I know God is with me - beyond a doubt. He's giving me the strength to press on, sometimes minute by minute. I'm blessed to feel his presence with me every moment. In this time of waiting for hindsight along with the relief and perspective it provides, this is what I'm choosing to do.
When you are waiting for hindsight, what can you do for relief? Here's guidance from God's Word.

I'm meditating on Proverbs 2:1-5 and pulling out these virtues to pursue: 
  • Wisdom. If I ask God to grant me his wisdom while I'm waiting for hindsight, he helps me see my struggles from a heavenly perspective rather than an earthly one. Again and again he reminds me that to him, a thousand years is like a day, and a day is like a thousand years (2 Peter 3:8). What seems like a long and painful season now may seem like a brief period later, when hindsight is available.
  • Understanding. I'm asking God to help me understand as much as he wants me to understand in this limbo period. I'm learning to be satisfied with little hints and glimpses rather than the whole picture. Talking with others to get their perspective truly encourages me too. In past situations, my understanding grew fuller with hindsight, and I'm anticipating that future perspective with hope.
  • Insight. In this season, I'm asking God to give me insight into the bedrock problems that lie under the surface. He's graciously shown me three deep areas in which I can work on my own healing in preparation for whatever is ahead. I know when I have hindsight on this healing work, I'll be grateful God granted me insight into those areas, since they were blind spots to me until he uncovered them.
Then I'm trusting in God's promises that he will give me:
  • A healthy fear of God. I keep thinking about Job finally getting God's answers after 37 chapters of suffering and lament. God's answers weren't really answers to Job's problems. Rather, they spoke about the Creator's unfathomable majesty and power. At the end of God's speech, Job said, "I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted" (Job 42:2). I keep repeating this verse to myself, reminding myself that God is writing my story and he is fully in control. He doesn't owe me an explanation, now or later, because he is God! A healthy fear of his power and omniscience will protect me from getting prideful and entitled in my current suffering.
  • The knowledge of God. A year from now, five years from now, and ten years from now, I will have much more knowledge about my current situation than I do now. Not just my own knowledge based on reason, but the spiritual knowledge God will lovingly grant me with the passage of time. He will be there with me on the days I look back with hindsight. I will thank and praise him for protecting me when I didn't even know it, and for guiding me along a path I couldn't even see at the time. This is where I'm placing my hope. Though I can't know how the story ends, I know it will be good, since God is always good.
I am writing this devotion from the valley, where you may be today. There are days when I desperately long to get relief from the pressure and want to run up the mountain to see the full story. But God is calling me to keep walking one step at a time through this valley, where his rod and staff are keeping me safe and giving me comfort (Ps. 23:4). I don't have the strength to run ahead, and even if I did, it wouldn't be good for me. He's calling me to trust him right here in the waiting period.
Though I don't have the gift of hindsight yet, I can anticipate receiving that gift someday with each forward step I take. I can also look back on previous hard seasons and thank God for the gift of hindsight I have on them now. Waiting for hindsight is hard, but I know that my joy will come soon enough (Ps. 30:5), and I pray you know and live this truth too.
Blessings and God's peace to you,
Sarah Geringer 
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Listen to the podcast episode of this devotion HERE.

Check out my book, Hidden Manna on a Country Road, all about connecting with God through nature and prayer - available now on Kindle and in paperback Nov. 1. 

Reflection questions:

1. When did the gift of hindsight bless you in the past? What did it teach you?
2. In which situation are you waiting for hindsight now? How can the virtues above help your faith grow while you wait?
Please share your thoughts in the comments below.


  1. My hubby and I are in the middle of a season of waiting and wondering if we heard God right. I'm needing to be ok with whichever way this situation turns out. But it's not been easy. Thank you for this encouraging post ...

  2. These are good encouragements. God is with us in every valley, and we'll have learned rich things when the current trail is over.

  3. I love this encouragement! I am in a season of grief and longsufferng and your words have truly ministered to me today.

  4. Hindsight is so valuable to see God's hand in all. I hadn't thought to pray for hindsight when in a valley or to wait, but this is so helpful.

  5. Thank you for these encouraging words, Sarah - and praying for you.❤️


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