So Jacob served seven years to get Rachel, but they seemed like only a few days to him because of his love for her. (Gen. 29:20)

EACH FALL I MOURN the giant oak that once shaded the front of our home. We lost it a few years ago after a storm took half of it. It had been secured years before our arrival with a cable between twin trunks that split fifteen feet in the air. Our home was built with the tree in mind, a tree that was estimated to be a hundred years old. It was a treasure until it became unsafe to allow the surviving half of it to remain standing. A tree has been planted in its place for future generations.

Nature provides us with examples of what can happen over time. Canyons are cut, forests are burned and replenished, glaciers are formed, long-dormant volcanoes erupt, and tiny saplings grow into stately oaks.

Jacob provided a human example of patience when he willingly worked for Laban fourteen years so he could have Rachel, the first seven living without her and the last seven to honor his debt. He waited and worked for what he desired and believed to be God’s will.

Today, though, we are not accustomed to waiting for things. Often impatient and spoiled, we fail to recognize that good and godly things are worth waiting for.

I’ll never see my lawn blanketed in the volume of leaves the way it once was, but I know one day others will romp and rake to their hearts’ desire.

Practice patience and diligence, allowing God to work His plan in your life.

Hally Franz is a former high school guidance counselor turned stay-at-home mom. She enjoys being a 4-H leader, church secretary, book club member, and traveler.