When You’re Not Ready Yet

My son: “Why can’t I have a phone?”

Me: “Because you’re not ready yet.”

Son: “Why can’t I have a job like Dad?”

Me: “Because you aren’t ready yet.

Son: “Why can’t I watch the movie with you guys?”

Me: “Because you aren’t ready yet.”

Maybe you relate to these conversations. A child eager to grow up is like a race horse anticipating the gate flinging open. I remind him adulting is overrated and that most adults wish to be kids again, but he still doesn’t seem to believe me.

I realize the words “because you aren’t ready yet” aren’t the most comforting to hear. But as I look back at most of my childhood, adolescence, and beyond, I realize something: I always felt ready before I was ready. It took loving people in my life to hold me back from what I wasn’t ready for, and times I didn’t listen exposed me to regrets.

I realized recently how much more I’ve learned to embrace those words. Recently, my mentor looked over a book I’m working on and said, “It’s almost ready, but not quite yet.” then she gave me a few things to work on. Then she did that three more times because it still wasn’t ready for our end goal. I cringed a little, because I worked hard only to hear it still wasn’t ready, but it also made me thankful. I’m thankful someone cares enough to fine tune, correct, and share advice to help me grow. I’m thankful because I learned something new every single time she said it.  It shows she believes in me, she wouldn’t waste her time if she didn’t. Someone who doesn’t care tells you you’re ready before you aren’t.

How about you? How do you respond when someone tells you that you aren’t ready yet? Do you pridefully rush ahead, or do you respond with a teachable heart? Do you give up or commit to growth? Do you point blame at others or take personal responsibility?

1 Peter 5:6 tells usHumble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you.”

Stay humble. Stay teachable. Be thankful for seasons of preparation and people who want to see fruit ripened in your life. And when someone says “you’re not ready yet,” strap yourself in and commit to growth. One day the gates will fling open and you’ll be off to the races.