I hope that I’m never a “just you wait” person.

Perhaps, I am at times. Let me explain. The “just you wait” person is someone who thinks they have been through it all. They attribute the perseverance to themselves and romanticize entire periods of their life. In doing so, they look down on all others who do not exercise the grace that they clearly showed while they went through that stage of life. They didn’t exhibit grace, but they pridefully remember it that way. To show off their superiority, they downplay the struggles of those they are talking to. This happens by referring to their superiority in that person’s situation and in other situations as well. Here is where the “just you wait” starts to be heard. To the young married couple who are having a small fight, “just you wait until year 5,7,10” (any year counts so long as the “just you wait” person has managed to get to a bigger number). To the young family who is struggling with their kids, “just you wait until … elementary, high school, college, etc.” (again, the same rules apply).

Contrast this with the “I’ve been there” person. This person understands the struggles; they can empathize with others. They understand that apart from grace, they don’t know where they would be. The “I’ve been there” person enters into the situation, counting their struggles less than those to whom they are talking. Replay the same scenarios, the young couple who has a small fight “I’ve been there, let me know if you need anyone to talk to.” The young couple who is struggling with their kids, “I’ve been there, I’m here if you need anyone.”

The first case sees perseverance as ammo for lifting themselves up. The second case sees preservation as an opportunity to enter into the situation.

I hope that I am an “I’ve been there” person.

I’ve been there as a high school student fighting for purity.

We’ve been there as a young married couple who has young families on one side and singles on the other, feeling left out.

We’ve been there as a married couple longing to have kids and wondering why it hasn’t happened yet.

We’ve been there as a family with babies and no sleep.

Lord, help me remember, guard me against being a “just you wait” person.