Waiting can be such a difficult task. We wait in line to be served next at the store. We wait for the light to change so we can get home to the kids or get to work on time. We wait to hear if we have received the job for which we interviewed. You fill in the next blank. What is it that you are waiting on?
What does waiting require of us? The first thing that comes to mind is patience. At times there is nothing we can do to hurry along that which we anticipate. Life happens on its own schedule and there are times we feel at the mercy of the clock. Nothing can speed along the results that are out of our control. The adverse is true as well – nothing can slow down the outcomes we dread.
Waiting also calls for trust. There are times when all we can do is believe that what is happening is for the best. When it is evident that life events are out of our control, the best thing we can do is have hope and believe that there is still Someone in charge. The little things we have been forced to wait upon all our lives, have been preparing us for the big things that creep up seemingly out of the blue. While we may be caught by surprise, God is not.
I studied 1 Thessalonians 3 today. Verse 4 states, “For when we were with you, we kept telling you beforehand that we were to suffer affliction, just as it has come to pass, and just as you know.” (ESV) We kept telling you. Life is going to have hard times, and some of those are moments of waiting. Waiting in lines, waiting for death to happen and waiting for healing. The good news is that we do not have to face those times alone. We can trust and know that God goes before us and is with us in any and every situation.
Tonight I await word that another loved one has passed into Glory. While I struggle with this, I try to imagine – and fail – what her husband is feeling. To try to relate to what he must be going through, I recall that God Himself waited for his son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross. We have and serve a God who knows pain, loss and who has perfected the art of waiting.
So as I struggle in waiting tonight, I find comfort in knowing that God has walked this road before us. He realizes the exact emotions we feel, even when we are unable to define them for ourselves. “Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” (Psalm 27:14 ESV)
Until next time –