Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Wrestling with Wait Issues

I just looked at a blog post by Perry Noble titled "Wrestling With Weight Issues." And for me - losing weight is a matter of doing it. But the title really intrigued me and sparked a play on words: Wrestling with Wait Issues. Waiting. That is one of the hardest things to do in life.

I talked with a friend of mine last night about this very subject. It's hard to wait for new jobs, new relationships, situations to work themselves out, change of seasons, the food to get ready, and even other people.

The word wait is fascinating - it is both a verb and a noun.
  • The verb form means: 1: to stay in place in expectation of :2: to delay serving (a meal) 3: to serve as waiter for 1 a: to remain stationary in readiness or expectation b: to pause for another to catch up —usually used with up 2 a: to look forward expectantly b: to hold back expectantly 3: to serve at meals —usually used in such phrases as wait on tables or wait on table4 a: to be ready and available b: to remain temporarily neglected or unrealized
    — wait on also wait upon 1 a: to attend as a servant b: to supply the wants of : serve 2: to make a formal call on3: to wait for.
  • The noun form: 1 a: a hidden or concealed position —used chiefly in the expression lie in wait b: a state or attitude of watchfulness and expectancy 2 a: one of a band of public musicians in England employed to play for processions or public entertainments b (1): one of a group who serenade for gratuities especially at the Christmas season (2): a piece of music by such a group3: an act or period of waiting

In the Bible there are plenty of examples of the noun, especially lying in wait (a hidden or concealed position). Usually applies to warfare, ambush or treachery. But that verb form: look forward expectantly, hold back, serve, remain stationary in readiness....WHAT!?!?! Wow. Wait is such a huge word. How do you know what to do? So I looked up a few things because what it reminds me of is "Wait upon the Lord."

In Ruth, Naomi tells Ruth to go to Boaz. She does and lays at his feet while he sleeps and in the morning sends her home with barley - he's been taking care of her and has vowed to continue to take care of her. (not to mention he's in love ;-) ) So Naomi tells Ruth, "Wait, my daughter, until you know how the matter turns out; for the man will not rest until he has settled it today." How did Ruth wait? We don't officially know because the story goes: "Meanwhile, Boaz..." Sheesh. Ruth must have been on pins and needles all day! I can only imagine what was going through her mind.

And the Psalms - FULL of waiting. Psalm 25 alone has multiple mentions: v3: Indeed, none of those who wait for You will be ashamed; Those who deal treacherously without cause will be ashamed. 5:5 Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; For You I wait all the day. 25:21 Let integrity and uprightness preserve me, For I wait for You. Psalm 27:14: Wait for the LORD; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the LORD. And there are a lot more in the Psalms. And one of the most famous: Isaiah 40:31 - Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up {with} wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.

Now, in my every day life I have to wait for many things. And there are situations in my life, like career or no career, future husband or no future husband, kids or no kids, etc., that I am waiting on the Lord to unfold His plan in my life. My friend and I discussed that at length. And we agree - waiting is hard. But at the same time I don't want to miss out on the opportunities God is giving me....like the mission trip in October, helping with the youth group, organizing a talent show, or even spending time with a friend. So while I look forward expectantly I am serving in the process...I am waiting on the Lord (both for His Word to be revealed to me, and serving for His glory).

And just think about it. All those years Isreal waited for a Savior - the Messiah - to come. And when He did, they did not recognize Him. (But to those who did He gave the right to become children of God - boy, did those others miss out!) And now we wait for the Lord to return.