Seasons of Waiting

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Author: Betsy Childs Howard


Walking by Faith When Dreams Are Delayed

We’re all waiting for something.

It might be a spouse or a baby. It might be healing or a home. Regardless of what we're waiting for, it’s easy to feel discontent when things aren’t going as planned and our dreams are delayed—especially when questions of “Why?” and “How long?” remain unanswered.

God uses seasons of waiting to teach us patience and make us more like himself. But sanctification is not the only purpose God has in mind. When we wait faithfully with unmet longings, we become a powerful picture of the bride of Christ waiting for the day when he returns and God’s kingdom reigns.


About the author:

Betsy Howard (MA, Beeson Divinity School) is an editor for the Gospel Coalition. She previously worked for Beeson Divinity School and Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, and is a regular contributor to the Gospel Coalition. Betsy lives in Manhattan with her husband, Bernard.


“The Bible and the history of the church are full of stories of God revealing incredible dreams and rescuing men and women in dramatic settings, such as Moses, Mary, John Wesley, and Pascal. But of course, it does not always happen that way—as Hannah, Elizabeth, Jeremiah, and countless other believers through the ages can testify. In Seasons of Waiting, Betsy Childs Howard offers hope for the weary traveler wrestling with this tension. Through her own story and others, she demonstrates how to wait well upon the faithful One who knows us and loves us and has a plan and purpose for each of us—and who often surprises us with gifts of which we may have never dreamed.”  ~Ravi Zacharias, Founder and President, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries; author, Jesus Among Other Gods

“The thesis of this book is simple but profound: God does not leave us alone in the many ‘waiting rooms’ of life, but uses seasons of pain, absence, and longing to draw us unto himself. Deeply personal and biblically wise, this is a book every Christian should read.”
Timothy George, Founding Dean, Beeson Divinity School; General Editor, Reformation Commentary on Scripture

“We are all in a season of waiting, even in the moments when we think we have arrived. Betsy Childs Howard speaks comforting truth to our anxious hearts, especially when we worry that our waiting will never end. What are you waiting for? Get a copy of this book and ask a friend to read with you!”  ~Gloria Furman, pastor’s wife, Redeemer Church of Dubai; author, The Pastor's Wife and Missional Motherhood      

“Betsy leads us with a gentle strength through some of the most difficult seasons of waiting and points us to Christ. This book will be a great encouragement to many. I hope you read it and draw near to your Savior who sees, loves, and cares about you in every situation.”  ~Jessica Thompson, author, Everyday Grace; coauthor, Give Them Grace

“No matter who you are, you’re waiting for something. Indeed, Christianity is a waiting religion as we eagerly long for the return of Christ. I don’t know a better book on the topic than this one by Betsy Childs Howard, one of my favorite writers.”  ~Collin Hansen, Editorial Director, The Gospel Coalition; author, Blind Spots

“Waiting is hard and confusing; and oftentimes our longings are for good things, like marriage and children. Betsy Childs Howard has provided an excellent resource to help us wait well. She doesn’t throw out familiar advice like ‘guard your heart’ and ‘be content.’ Instead, she graciously shows us how God is working in our waiting through the parables of Jesus, the stories of others, and the wonderful promises in God’s Word. God has a purpose greater than we could ever hope or imagine and Howard gently takes our hand to help us see this to be true. You will not regret picking this up.”  ~Trillia Newbell, author, EnjoyFear and Faith, and United

“Betsy Childs Howard provides us with a much-needed message to strengthen us in every type of waiting. She transforms our understanding from the belief that we are not getting what we deserve, to hoping in the better life to come that awaits us in Christ. She removes the isolation we feel in our waiting and helps us see that we are all waiting for something in this life, but more importantly, we are all waiting for the return of King Jesus.”  ~Courtney Reissig, wife; mom; Assistant Editor, The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood; author, The Accidental Feminist    

“Betsy Childs Howard invites readers to come and connect with real-life stories that are centered on the Bible’s story of redemption in Jesus Christ. In pointing toward the hope of the gospel, this book does not minimize our painful present waiting, it fortifies the waiter and lights up the waiting with the presence of Christ.”  ~Kathleen B. Nielson, Director of Women’s Initiatives, The Gospel Coalition

“Betsy Childs Howard writes with tender empathy for those who wait with deep, unmet longings. She shows the path away from despair toward unfading hope. A humble heart can hold both contentment and grief together in ways that honor the Lord in their dependence on him, even as they point to Christ’s return when all our longings will be fulfilled in him. Because we inhabit time with a past and a future, we’re always waiting for something. Howard reminds us powerfully, from Scripture, that in God’s wisdom, it’s good to wait.”  ~Candice Watters, cofounder,; author, Get Married: What Women Can Do to Help it Happen

“Betsy has written a warm and winsome book that can be appreciated by people who are waiting on God for a variety of circumstances. Even if our waiting is characterized by painful longing, Betsy encourages us that if the painful longing is anchored in a firm confidence in the goodness of God, we are waiting well. Open this book and you will find much encouragement for how to do so.”  ~Carolyn McCulley, filmmaker; speaker; author, The Measure of Success, Radical Womanhood, and Did I Kiss Marriage Goodbye?