While You Wait

By: Kristen L. McNulty

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It seems like we spend the majority of our lives waiting. For the check to come in the mail. For our turn at the counter. For the test results to come in. For a prayer to be answered. For Mr. or Mrs. Right to walk through the door.

Waiting is a big part of our lives. And it can be a completely miserable experience. We want things here. We want them now. We want control. We want a time table. And often we don't get it. Because life is anything but an exercise of our control.

We're human. We don't know what's coming around the corner. We don't like it, but it's true nonetheless.

So what are we to do when we find ourselves pacing in our own little waiting rooms of life? Do we make contingency plans? Do we twiddle our thumbs? Do we find something to keep ourselves occupied? Or do we watch the seconds tick by on the clock?

If you're anything like myself, you've probably found yourself doing all of the above. While waiting to hear back on that job- you know the one that feels just right? You've probably both mentally decorated your new office and at the same time decided where the job hunt might lead you next. After all, it pays to be prepared. Or so we think.

Could it be that our problem with waiting is very closely connected with our constant attempt to be thinking one step a head? Because by thinking one step a head we aren't giving God the wait time He might need with us here and now.

Maybe the heavenly purpose behind waiting is for us to just be for a few minutes, hours, months, or sometimes even years. Maybe the time hiccup between one thing and the next isn't supposed to be an inconvenience, but rather, all part of a divine plan. Maybe God sometimes gets us to wait because He wants us to step back and look around for a bit. Whether that's for a minute at the supermarket or for months between jobs. In our impatience and rush to plan a head, maybe we're just not giving waiting as much credit as it deserves.

After all, wasn't it Isaiah who said "Those who wait upon the Lord will renew their strength"? There is value that comes in the waiting rooms of life. Finding that value depends on what we do while we wait.

Do we, like the CEO type in the waiting room, look at no one but our blackberry as we plan our agenda? Or do we, like the impatient guy in the room, keep getting up every few minutes to see if our turn might be coming any faster?

What if we were all like the cool, calm person in the corner who's relaxed and just taking it all in? The one who honestly is just enjoying the wait. But at the same time is paying attention so when their name is finally called, they're ready to get out of that little room and move on to whatever adventure lies next.

I don't know about you, but to me, the third option sounds just a little more appealing. And maybe a whole lot closer to what we all should be doing during our own wait times in life.

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This devotional was aired as a part of the Making A Difference Christian Radio Show.