Wait.

Wait.

Hold on. Sit tight. Don’t move.

Wait.

[weyt, verb] – to stay where one is or delay action until a particular time or until something else happens.

“Well, what are you waiting for?” It’s a question I wish I always had an answer to. Truthfully, it’s a question I wish I didn’t have to ask myself so often. No one likes to wait, and few people know how to truly wait well (I am historically not one of those people). It makes us feel stagnant, purposeless, and empty. It makes it seem like you can’t quite do anything until you get an answer from the boy, or the job, or the school.

Underneath the waiting is the reality that there is something we want, but don’t have. There is a thing, or a place, or a person that we long for, yet find ourselves without. It’s the perfect opportunity for ungratefulness, lack of trust in God’s goodness, and intensified focus on self. It gives us chance to wave our arms and shake our fists, asking God why He’s forgotten.

But what if it’s not about what we wait for or how long we wait, but rather what we do in the waiting? If Jesus is really after your heart (and boy, do I believe He is), then it’s not just about enduring the time between “please” and “thank you.” It’s about being formed to His likeness in between.

The season of advent recently reminded us that we wait for the promises of a sovereign God to come to pass in our lives.

Sometimes it’s tangible:

“And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High.” {Luke 1:31}

Sometimes it’s not:

“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” {Philippians 4:7}

If we believe that God is good and for us and intricately involved in both our desiring and our receiving, then our waiting must be seen through the lens hope.

Like the little ones on Christmas Eve, struggling to sleep but finding it impossible because they know what they will find when morning comes. They wait with unshaking expectation. There is no question of if there will be gifts and giggles – it is simply a matter of when the night will end.

Could we wait with such expectation? Submission laced with certainty to lead us to a place of confidence in the One we trust.

Now Yahweh surely isn’t Santa Clause and I have no intention of hoping you believe so. But the waiting modeled for us in Scripture is wrecking me a bit this holiday. It was full of expectation, hope, and anticipation.

The word waiting is often translated as looking for and even receiving. There was a confidence in their expectation that demanded something would be done, and though they surely didn’t know all the details, they knew their God would come through.

“If the Lord makes us wait, let us do so with our whole hearts; for blessed are all they that wait for Him. He is worth waiting for. The waiting itself is beneficial to us: it tries faith, exercises patience, trains submission, and endears the blessing when it comes.”

-Charles Spurgeon

We wait because it strengthens our trust in Yahweh’s promises. We wait because it heightens our sensitivity to His voice. We wait because it reminds us that He is God and we are not.

As you enter the new year waiting for that thing, press in to the longing that lies beneath the want. Wherever you find yourself and whatever you are waiting on, do so with your whole heart. Make a list of things you’re waiting for and match each with a lesson to be learned in the waiting. Ask Jesus to make Himself known in your waiting and trust with confidence that He will speak and lead you along the way.

Here’s the thing: you will always be waiting for something. And a life fully lived is a life that is all-in to each & every moment of each & every day. Learning to wait well allows us to fully indulge in the joy that today brings, trusting that the unwritten days & decisions will unfold exactly as our King sees fit.

You can wait well because you follow the unchanging Giver of good gifts (James 1:17). You can anticipate because He is able to provide exceedingly beyond your wildest dreams (Ephesians 3:21). You can be the example-setter of patience and endurance because you have everything you need right now to be holy (2 Peter1:3).






 

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