If you live in the USA, you know what I mean when I say we live in a culture that gets what they want when they want it. You can find something on Amazon and have it mailed to your house to arrive the next day or you can buy the digital version of a movie and watch it instantly. You don’t have to wait for snail mail to be delivered when you can text or instant message a friend online. So now when our fast food is made fresh and we’re told that we have to pull off to the side and wait for a few minutes we get irritated. If I’m being honest, I think that this culture I live in has affected how I wait for God…or don’t like waiting. I pray for something and I expect instant relief from my troubles, but sometimes God makes us wait so that we can have the better stuff (kind of like when McDonald’s asks you to wait a minute for the fresh fries).
The reality is, that the good stuff doesn’t come instantly. God’s people in the Old Testament waited about 4000 years for the Messiah to come! They definitely didn’t handle the waiting well when you see how they mistreated God’s prophets and how they didn’t even acknowledge Jesus’ deity when he arrived. And here we find ourselves waiting once again. This time, we’ve been waiting about 2000 years for the messiah’s second coming, and we’re not doing a very good job at waiting. When I’m in line at Taco Bell I wait eagerly for them to call my order number and when I hear it, I respond quickly because I’m ready for it. But when it comes to waiting for Jesus’ return, I often get distracted by the cares of this life to the point that if he were to return right this moment I would not be expecting it.
All that being said, in this season of Advent let’s learn to wait expectantly. And not just that, but let’s remember what it is that we’re waiting for! We’re waiting for our king to return and establish his kingdom on this earth. We’re waiting for a time when every person of God will be healed and their tears wiped away and their heartbreak will be no more. We’re waiting for more people to accept Jesus’ forgiveness. We’re waiting for the perfect ending to this life.