Perhaps the reason that we experience such difficulty with this act of waiting is that we have mistaken its meaning. For many of us, waiting means stopping, standing still, even retreating from the “goings on” of life. It often is misconstrued as doing nothing. But while our waiting often looks like that on the outside, I am realizing that active waiting is a journey in and of itself.
Think about this…things that involve transformation–growth, healing, acceptance, even, as we wait in this season of Advent, birth–also involve waiting. It does not mean that nothing is happening; it just means that we are not fully in control of where we are going and how it will all end up. The journey through waiting, then, is definitely ours to walk. The point is that, finally, someone else is leading the way. We just have to open ourselves to the possibility that we might end up in a different place altogether. We just have to open ourselves to the very real possibility that God will come in a way that we have neither planned or expected and do things that we can’t even fathom.
Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. Then the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all people shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken. (Isaiah 40: 4-5, NRSV)
So, go forth and wait!
Grace and Peace,