Be patient, therefore, beloved, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious crop from the earth, being patient with it until the early and late rains. You must also be patient. James 5:7-8
Each year as I begin preparing for Advent, I come across the terms “waiting” and “patience,” and I recall once being told that a “waiting” person is a “patient” person. The word “patience” implies the willingness to stay where we are and live the situation out in the belief that something hidden there will reveal itself to us. Patient living means to live actively in the present and wait there.
Waiting makes us much more aware of the empty spaces in our lives. We seem to have a fear of empty spaces. We want to fill up what is empty. Perhaps our fear is that an empty space means that something may happen that we cannot predict, something that is new, that we might just be led to a place that we do not want to go. I once heard that waiting is even more difficult when we are fearful. Our fears of the unknown can explain why it is so hard to wait and just how tempting it is for us to act, to do something just to stay in control. Impatient people expect the real thing to happen somewhere else, for them the moment is empty, and they simply want to get away from the present situation and go elsewhere. But, patient people dare stay can be found there, still waiting.
.....It is choosing to hope for something that is far beyond our imaginings.
.....It is trusting enough to give up control over our future and letting God define our life.
.....It is living with the conviction that God molds us in love, holds us in tenderness, and moves us away from the sources of our fear.
This is what we can find in our empty spaces. This is when we let go of the safety net, this is when we learn to trust, this is when we experience Jesus as our anchor of hope, this is why we wait.
Wishing you all a patient and hope filled Advent, Pastor Alan