Have you ever had to wait for something? Perhaps you’ve been waiting a little longer these past few years – wow – years of the global pandemic. Things have been at a standstill and we are “waiting” for things to grow, change, move forward… Everything seems to take longer. We voted today in Canada, and we were told the process would take longer as everyone kept their social distance, and polling stations were shuffled in order to control crowd sizes. Our little crew moved along quite quickly and we didn’t have too much trouble. But you get it, right? Line ups, cues, and the like, are a lesson in patience.
And then there is the unknown. Waiting for decisions to be made. Waiting for lab reports to run. Waiting for news to arrive. What will be the answer? How will that outcome change me? Will I be part of the change or simply part of the wait? Any expectant mama knows all about this waiting game. As the little one grows, we become totally attached… emotionally, physically and mentally. And then when the waiting is over… well that baby rocks your whole world. But first, you have to wait.
I’ve been waiting for something for a little while now. I know the timing is not right, but I’m still eagerly awaiting. I anticipate and plan and “prepare”… but I’m still stuck in the waiting stages. And to be honest, I hate it. I’m not one for quick decisions, but I do like to see progress once a decision is made. I like to see that there is some movement forward. I’d even take movement backward, as long as there is movement. I don’t like the “stuck” in the proverbial purgatory of neither here nor there. Perhaps I’m not a very patient person. I have some flaws… patience is a virtue. We’ve written about this before. It’s still a hang up of mine. If you care to find out the sweet truth about patience being a virtue, you can read about it here. Moving on…
Each one of us must be patient at some point. It’s just the way life is. We learn the coping skills at a very young age. Breathe, cry, scream, yell, throw things… fester and mumble and complain… leave guilt ridden hints about how slow other people are… I guess your reactions depend on the thing you are being patient about. I was going to say you “mature” in your waiting game… but realistically there are plenty of grown adults who behave a lot like impatient toddlers. Cue drama. Two years old, or twenty two… same drama. Or is it? I know some very patient people. Those even keeled, totally “zen” folks who rarely get their feathers ruffled by having to wait. Is it a skill? Is it the way we are wired? Lemme know if you have an answer to this one, because I struggle with the “wait”.
Our pastor touched on this waiting game on Sunday’s study of Acts 1. Jesus told the disciples to “wait” for the gift I am sending you (i.e. the Holy Spirit, see Acts 1:4). Perhaps many of the disciples were like me… and not so good at the waiting game. They had seen some radical things happen in the short period before these words, and I am sure they were “chomping at the bit” to see the early church’s movement gain momentum. But Jesus told them to wait. If they had chosen not to wait, then what power would they receive at the day of Pentecost? One definition of waiting I found was this:
noun: “the action of staying where one is or delaying action until a particular time or until something else happens”
I like it because it indicates steps. I like steps. Wait until this, or this…then this. This helps me get through my waiting. I can do this and this until this. Then wait. Until this….
The waiting game is not an easy game to master. It’s a learned skill. It takes some guts. It takes self control and patience. For many of us, waiting is a struggle. They say good things come to those who wait. This was certainly the case in Acts 1. I’m hoping it will be for me at the end of my waiting game… and I trust that God gives you the patience to wait as well. Until next week, my friends! I’ll be waiting!!