Sunday, April 17, 2011

What is it about WAITING that I hate so much?

Wait! What do you think of when you hear that word? I don’t like the word WAIT. I’m not big on waiting for anything in my life. And yet, I have waited for many things – my driver’s license, getting married, traveling overseas. I’ve waited for kids at school, at practices, for them to grow up and leave home. I’m not good at waiting.

This week I went to where I thought my son was having a baseball game, only to discover when I got there that they weren’t playing at that location and I had no idea where they were playing. I tried calling everybody I could think of to find out where they were but nobody answered their phones. So I sat in a parking lot and waited . . .

Did I say I’m not good at waiting? I’m not good at waiting. I want to get things done, to accomplish something and move on to the next thing. Why is waiting so hard? I think it’s hard because it signifies my helplessness, that I’m no longer in control, that there is nothing I can do to change the circumstances. I can’t fix it or change it, I’m powerless.

A friend of mine is waiting . . . she’s waiting as she watches cancer slowly draw the life from the one she loves. There’s nothing more she can do but wait and spend every moment she can with him. If I’m really honest, I think waiting sucks!

I don’t like to feel helpless. I want to DO something. Waiting is never easy and yet God, throughout Scripture calls us to WAIT on Him. Why is that? Webster’s Dictionary defines waiting as “remaining stationary in readiness or expectation”. In our waiting we are powerless but God is NOT! Look at what Psalm 37:7 says, “Be still in the presence of the Lord and WAIT patiently for Him to act . . .” (NLV)

What is it about waiting that is so hard for us as humans? It is the letting go and placing whatever “it” is in God’s hands. Waiting causes us to see our weaknesses and our frailty as humans. In our waiting there is an acknowledgement that God is God and we are not!

Could it be this waiting is God’s gift to my friend? A gift to spend these last days with her husband, making the most of every minute, an opportunity to say all that she wants to say to him and to live life to the fullest while he is with her.

I would prefer that WAIT was not a word in our vocabulary but it is. And it is what God calls us to do. Notice that we are to rest (not to try to fix things) and wait (wait for Him to act – not for Him to do what we want Him to do.)

As a follower of Jesus do you see waiting as a gift? A gift to rest in His presence knowing and trusting that He has everything under His control?

All of us find ourselves from time to time in the waiting place. Waiting for a job, waiting for a baby, waiting for love, waiting for a wayward child to come home, waiting for . . . ?

Is this waiting place a time of frustration and anxiety for you or are you putting your hope and trust in God as you wait expectantly for what He will do? God’s desire for you is that you rest in Him.

Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. . . .” Matthew 11:28 (NLV)

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