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  • Writer's picturePaper Paladin

Seasons of Waiting

Waiting is a big theme in my manuscript. It’s also a big theme in my life. Currently, I find myself waiting for this manuscript to become a book. I find myself waiting for healing and change in relationships. I also find myself waiting alongside my friends in their struggles.

And, it’s also literally the season of waiting. It’s Advent.

As much as we think we have to wait a long time for things, God is the one who waits the most.

Jesus told His disciples that students aren’t above their teachers (Matthew 10:24-25 NASB). Peter later writes: “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9 NASB). The author of Hebrews also says, "For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin." (Hebrews 4:15 NASB)

If God waits, and He's our Teacher, why are we surprised by seasons of waiting? And by that, I mean, why do we resist and complain about waiting?

Part of it is because of the environment in which we are surrounded. We live in an impatient culture. Patience isn’t really an option anymore. Everything is “on-demand”. What a phrase.

Waiting pushes back on our culture (and our nature). Whether we like it or not. And it gets up in our face, forcing us to make a decision: how do we wait? Do we whine, point blame, and take matters into our own hands? Or do we breathe deeply of God’s Spirit, from Whom comes the fruit of self-control and patience?

Waiting is a time of character formation. If we strive to wait well and allow God’s Spirit to work in us, we learn to trust and step daily in faith. We surrender to our “not-all-knowing” reality. We seek God, His Kingdom, and make it possible for Him to work in and through us.

Such easy words for me to type, so challenging to anoint and absorb into my being moment-by-moment.

As we find ourselves in the Advent season, waiting and hoping, I offer the challenge to strive to wait well. Allow the waiting to get under your skin, to rub you the wrong way. Let it rein in your resistance. Yes, this may mean tears and challenging conversations with yourself, God, and others. But don't shy away from this unique moment of character formation.

As the scents, sounds, and scenes of this Advent season inundate us, may God’s Spirit continue the good work that He has already begun in us. May we be people who are practicing waiting well.

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