and wait. We've likely all experienced that
annoying phenomenon. Sometimes the really
irritating experiences are relatively mundane.
Like the untimed traffic lights on the main
thoroughfare through my home town. There are
lights at every other intersection (read that, every
other block) along Broadway as you travel from or
towards the Causeway (our way on and off the
Island). And no matter what speed you drive,
you will inevitably play an adult version of the
kids' game "red light, green light," as you race two
blocks, slam on the brakes, race two blocks, slam on
the brakes. Hurry up. Wait. Hurry
course, there are the more monumental elements of
waiting that we experience in our lives. As I
write, our beloved Uncle Billy has entered Hospice
Care and the waiting begins. With little
effort, I can recall the waiting that comes along
with the palliative care that is Hospice as I
remember my family's experience in my precious
grandmother's last weeks. Yes, weeks. We
were anticipating days. But days turned into
weeks. Those weeks were filled with waiting.
Waiting for guests who came to offer good-byes.
Waiting for health aides to arrive to assist us.
Waiting to see if Grandma would wake up today.
Waiting to see if that next breath would come... and
sometimes that felt like a really long time.
In fact, I even began writing, as I waited, our
family take on the popular Christopher Guest
mockumentary "Waiting for Guffman" (which is Guest's
parody of Samuel Beckett's "Waiting for Godot").
I had titled my piece, "Waiting for Grandma.... to
Die." I suppose it was a way to interject
humor in a time that often felt uneasy, unusual, and
Yesterday, my father-in-law slipped on a patch of
ice in his driveway and broke his hip. I
imagine the waiting for a passerby to appear and be
flagged down to help him seemed like a long time.
And I feel quite confident that my mother-in-law's
anxiety level was high, as she waited throughout the
day to catch a flight back home, to be near her
husband, the level of whose injuries she did not
Sometimes, our periods of waiting come with known
results. We wait during Advent for the birth
of the Christ child. We wait during Lent,
anticipating the resurrection of our Lord and
Savior. We wait through the blackness of
night, watching for sunlight on the horizon.
We know these things are coming, and so our waiting
is less stressful.
of the time, we don't know. We don't know
exactly what is coming. Or how it will come.
Or when it will come. We don't know what the
experience of the coming will be like, or how it
will affect us, or what role we'll play in it.
And our on-demand, fast-paced-society psyches shout
"Hurry Up!" because we are desperate to know the
outcome. We simply can't stand the not
in all this, though, is that the destination, the
result, the outcome --- this is not so significant.
It is the waiting that is the true journey.
How do we conduct ourselves in the waiting.
Are we too focused on the destination that we lose
sight of the current place in life where we are when
is filled with the concept of waiting. It is
in the waiting that we come to know God, that we
come to truly trust God. One of my friends
shared with me that God's timeline is not our
timeline, but God is never late. And so we
must trust that the journey is in the waiting.
friend, Kinley Lange, composed the following... I
only wish I had a recording that you could hear:
heart waits, the eyes are opened.
heart waits, the ears can hear.
heart waits, in expectation,
Spirit draws near.
a gift in waiting, in living through the now;
up the knowing to gain the knowing how.
a gift in waiting, in places dark and strange;
up an image to gain the choice of change.
a gift in waiting, to hear the still, small voice;
list'ning on our knees, then rising to rejoice.
Grace and peace
to you as you journey.
Yours in Christ,