Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Waiting - Part 1

I've been thinking a lot about waiting, as you know, and I've been waiting for a good time to write about waiting. I figured I could at least start, and add more later.

First, a quick quote from "Oh The Places You'll Go" by Dr. Seuss:

The Waiting Place...
...for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.

That kind of waiting is momentary and over quickly, but I'm thinking more of the waiting that takes a long time, like Proverbs 13:12 "Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but desire fulfilled is a tree of life."

Around me there are a lot of people waiting. Waiting for a home to sell or be built, medical test results, or the special guy to write. Waiting for school to start, a baby to be born, a lawsuit to be settled, or to find a job. Waiting for a daughter to call or a friend to say she's sorry. Waiting for a wedding, a vacation, a package, or a cold to go away. Waiting for a time when the house is finally in order, life finally goes as planned, and we finally have time for whatever is on the list.

I'm in a place of waiting. Without going into details, there's a lot going on that I can do absolutely nothing about right now. It is out of my control, and all I can do is sit and wait.

So one night as I laid in bed thinking in circles around the things I can't control, I started going through the Bible, listing mentally those who had to wait.

Old Testament

I started with Adam. He was waiting on his perfect companion as he named the animals. Noah had to wait 100 years for the flood. Abraham & Sarah waited 25 years for their promised son. Isaac waited at home for Rebecca when the servant went looking for a bride. Jacob waited and worked 7 years for Rachel. Joseph waited for years in Egypt before his brothers asked for forgiveness. He also waited in prison for the cupbearer to talk to the King. Moses waited in Midian as a shepherd. Esther waited a year to see the king. Job waited on God, not know that his life would be restored. Jonah waited 3 days in the fish. Daniel waited overnight in the den.

New Testament

To jump to the new testament, Jesus waited 33 years to begin the ministry he was called to. SImeon waited his whole life to see the Messiah. The disciples waited three agonizing days to see Jesus resurrected. They waited 50 days for the Holy Spirit to descend as promised.

Waiting is all over the Bible. I can think of two quick examples of those who didn't wait: Esau couldn't wait for dinner and sold his birthright for some stew. In Hebrews 12 he's described as godless, "who for a single meal sold his inheritance rights as the oldest son." In the new testament, the prodigal son in the new testament couldn't wait for his father to die to receive his inheritance.

I'm out of time now, but I have continued thoughts - will have to WAIT for another day...

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