Christmas is coming. You can’t miss it. Our tree is up, we pass the bright lights on our way home from work and school, the radio stations have a playlist of about five Christmas songs going right now, and the glorious peppermint mochas are here– for a limited time only. We are waiting for Christmas in full force. Each day, we get closer and closer, and the excitement seems almost unbearably thrilling for the littles in my life. They know it’s coming. They can tell you how many days until December 25 without fail. As adults, we see it as an easy thing to wait for; we know the good that’s on the other end. But when we grow up, our waiting isn’t quite so fun.
I’ve been a witness to the waiting lately. I’ve prayed with friends waiting for a medical appointment. I’ve prayed with strangers waiting for a heart transplant. I’ve prayed with families waiting for the doctor to come out and say “she’s gonna be okay”. I’ve prayed for an end to the wait.
“If I actually love God I’m patient with the story He’s writing“. I heard this on Annie Downs’ That Sounds Fun podcast yesterday. I had to listen to it again to soak it up. If we look at scripture as one connected piece, we see that “love is patient” (1 Corinthians 13:4). Therefore, if I love God, I am patient with God. Are you uncomfortable? Because I’m uncomfortable. If I need to be patient with God to love God, then I’m not a very loving daughter. I want immediate answers. I want my prayers to come to fruition now. Fix it, Jesus!
I know I’ve written about waiting before. A lot. It just feels like Christmas is a good time to think about waiting. When Jesus was born, it was an answer to a 400 year old prayer. The people that first knew about a Messiah were long gone before His plan played out. They died not knowing. When Mary heard she would give birth to the Savior of the world, she had to wait nine months to see what this would look like. We wait, too, for our Savior to come back. We very well may die before He returns, but we need to wait well and we need to wait with hope.
God chose us for the wait. He isn’t stringing us along, He’s forming us into the favored children we are. We may wait and end up with results we didn’t want. We may wait and celebrate at the finish line. We may get our green light and feel a little underwhelmed. God won’t send us on a meaningless journey. The waiting has a purpose, and we can trust Him in that. If I don’t get an answer today, there’s a reason why. If my prayer is not answered the way I wanted, I can trust that God’s plans are better. They may be better in a heavenly sense and not through my earthly eyes, but they are better.
Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you”—this is the Lord’s declaration—“plans for your well-being, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
There it is…what we all want while we wait– Hope.
If He is not your hope, the waiting will be excruciating. Why is waiting for Christmas not painful? Because we get Jesus at the end. How did our biblical ancestors wait for 400 years? Because they got Jesus at the end. Why can we hope that our prayers will be answered in the best possible way? Because Jesus is on the other end.
I don’t know what you’re waiting for today. You may be where you want to be. I hope you meet Jesus there.
If you’re needing a new Christmas song while you wait, check out this one by Ellie Holcomb. It’s a great way to start your Friday. Ellie Holcomb-Hope is Alive