I’ve never been Black Friday shopping.
Not traditionally at least, where you camp out overnight to get something you just can’t wait for (but clearly can because you’re standing outside in the freezing cold). I’m more of the head to the mall around 2 p.m. kind of gal. I don’t like waiting in lines or being surrounded by people when I shop. I like to go into a store, unhurriedly browse for a little bit, buy what I need and leave.
I wish I could say I was more patient in other areas of life, but the truth is I’m just not. It’s not that I can’t wait. I can wait; I just don’t like to wait.
Over time God has taught me how to wait patiently through the trials I’ve faced. He’s taught me to wait patiently for Him to move, rescue and restore my brokenness. He’s taught me to wait patiently for His direction and guidance. He’s taught me to trust and know that in the waiting, He is doing something great. But I still don’t like to wait.
Sometimes in the waiting, I forget how to be patient, remain hopeful and cling to truth in the everyday circumstances of life — especially the mundane, lackluster and troublesome days. Sometimes I don’t want to wait; I just want the trial to be over and done with already.
I recently read a good blog about waiting and Advent. The writer said, “If we got everything we wanted the moment we wanted it, we would lose out on the journey, and what happens on that journey.”
I can’t deny a big part of me agrees with this. Looking back on my life, it’s so obvious what God was up to while I was waiting. He was molding me more and more into His image. He was teaching me something. He was leading me to a better place. But there’s also a part of me — the part that endures chronic, debilitating pain on a daily basis — that wishes for immediate gratification, comfort and healing. I long for all of the waiting and suffering to end.
It makes me wonder how God’s people felt while they were waiting for a Savior to come. I bet the people of the Old Testament were sick and tired of waiting for Messiah to come. And yet we see time and time again in scripture, when we grow weary, God tells us to keep waiting anyways.
“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” Psalm 27:24
“For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end — it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.” Habakkuk 2:3
“But as for me, I will look to the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me.” Micah 7:7
“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.” Psalm 62:5
“Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains.” James 5:7
“In the path of your judgments, O Lord, we wait for you; your name and remembrance are the desire of our soul.” Isaiah 26:8
In this season of Advent, whatever it is you are waiting on or hoping for, I invite you to remain hopeful with me and cling to God’s truth: That He is still moving, shaping, rescuing, restoring and redeeming us on a daily basis. That He will never forsake us and has a purpose for our lives. That in the waiting, great things can and will happen.
Starting today during Advent 2015, try to surrender immediate gratification and embrace waiting. Be satisfied with where you are today and where God is taking you on this grand adventure. And most of all be assured of the hope we have in Jesus, who fulfilled God’s promises and, after much waiting by mankind, came to rescue, restore and redeem us. Wait for God to do what only He can do.