September 10, 2021

The Waiting Time

Our soul waits for the Lord; he is our help and shield.
Psalm 33:20
Waiting seems very passive. In many of our minds, it's the equivalent of doing nothing. Waiting is boring—often even frustrating. But have you thought about how your mother tongue might shape your waiting? For example, if you've ever studied French or Spanish, you might remember that the words for "wait" and "hope" are the same in both those languages. How differently our waiting might feel to us if we associated it closely with hoping!

This brings us to the biblical view of waiting. The scriptures tell us over and over again to wait for God. But the waiting it describes is never passive or boring. It's a waiting that's filled with hope and trust. And it's a waiting that's also filled with service. Maybe we need to wait for the fulfillment of God's will in our lives. But there's still a great deal we already know about what God desires. And so, as we wait, we can be going about God's business of sharing Christ's love, creating justice, and making peace. Thus may we participate in God's wholeness even as we wait for the consummation of God's will on earth as it is in heaven.

In hope we were saved. 
 Romans 8:24
Prayer after thinking about today's devotion:
You keep us waiting.
You, the God of all time, 
want us to wait for the right time in which to discover 
who we are, where we must go, 
who will be with us, and what we must do. 
So, thank you…
for the waiting time. 

You keep us looking. 
You, the God of all space, 
want us to look in the right and wrong places for signs of hope, 
for people who are hopeless, 
for visions of a better world 
that will appear among the disappointments of the world we know. 

So, thank you…for the looking time. 
You keep us loving. 
You, the God whose name is love, 
want us to be like you‚
to love the loveless and the unlovely and the unlovable; 
to love without jealousy or design or threat, 
and most difficult of all, to love ourselves. 
So, thank you…
for the loving time. 

And in all this you keep us, 
through hard questions with no easy answers; 
through failing where we hoped to succeed 
and making an impact when we felt useless; 
through the patience and the dreams and the love of others; 
and through Jesus Christ and his Spirit, you keep us.
 Iona Community (Scotland)
✙ 
After your own thanksgivings & petitions, close with the Lord's Prayer.
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