I am terrible at waiting. If you asked anyone who really knows me, they would agree. Patience is not a virtue that I posses. I admire people who are patient. They seem to be satisfied with their circumstances and with life in general. Waiting is an excruciating process for me. Walmart check out lines—-just forget it- waiting for my turn is agonizing. The ugliness of my personality seems to demonstrate itself best in situations where patience is required. This lack of ability to wait seems to extend to my life circumstances as well. It appears that I am not adept to waiting on the Lord either. I want answers – now. I want to know how it will work in the end—-now. I was reading a Henri Nouwen devotional this morning and he alleges that “Patience does not mean passivity it is active waiting in which we live in the present moment to the full in order to find there the signs of the One we are waiting for.” Nouwen is speaking of waiting patiently on God in terms I had never thought of before this moment.
If I am to buy into this Nouwen idea of waiting on God, then I truly am more patient than I thought I was. Nouwen continues to write “Waiting patiently is suffering through the present moment, tasting it to the full, and letting the seeds that are sown in the ground on which we stand grow into strong plants.” Contently waiting for God is grounded in my ability to grip the difficult moments of life and “suffer” through them in order to fully appreciate when the answer finally comes. I am to experience my circumstances through the lens of how I am “wired”-meaning that each of our journeys will be unique, but I am NOT supposed to simply wait as I would to check out at Walmart. It isn’t a passive stance. It is actively working through life’s circumstances and embracing the invitation to grow. Yes, this does require a different type of patience, one that is grounded in action and results in blessings beyond our imagination.
This I know for sure….