Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Waiting Expectantly

"Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished!” Luke 1:45

Waiting is difficult when you don't know what you're waiting for.

Think of the last time you asked a child to wait without reason. What's the first thing out of their mouth? "Why?" They demand a reason for the imposition of waiting. They want to know, "Is my waiting worth it? Is there a purpose to my waiting?"

The Christmas story begins with people waiting--Zechariah, Elizabeth, and Mary. Visited by the angel Gabriel, God promises both Zechariah and Mary sons (John the Baptist to Zechariah and Elizabeth and Jesus, the Messiah, to Mary and Joseph). But unlike our weak parenting answer for waiting ("Because I said so") God defines their purpose for waiting with a promise.

To John: "Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to give him the name John. He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord...Many of the people of Israel will he bring back to the Lord their God. And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the fathers to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord” (Luke 1:13-17 NIV).

To Mary: "But the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end” (Luke 1:30-33 NIV).

And they waited with a sense of expectancy (literally and spiritually), trusting that God's promise was indeed already active inside of them. They did not believe that "nothing" would become "something" but rather they believed the "something started" would grow into "something greater" by God's hand through them (Henri Nouwen, Waiting for God, Watch for the Light, 2001 Orbis Books).

Faith that God would make good of his promises based on his past faithfulness is how they  waited--with eyes wide open and with great expectancy.

What has God promised you? Are you waiting expectantly in faith that what God said will come to pass? Do you find yourself tired of waiting? If so, ask God to remind you of his promise for waiting. Write it down. Post it where you can refer to it often and wait with a sense of expectancy.

"Not one of all the LORD’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled." Joshua 21:45

Thank you Lord for your faithfulness. May we cling to your promises with hope and wait with great expectancy for your day of completion. Grow our faith, Lord as we wait.

No comments:

Post a Comment