I enjoy making up words. I loved word play with my children. We now have several words only our family knows. Today I made up this one: FaithWaiting.
FaithWaiting is different from regular waiting.
All waiting is pretty excruciating. Waiting for admission to that certain college. Waiting to turn 16. Waiting for the wedding day. Waiting in traffic. Waiting for the biopsy results…or really, almost any results. Waiting to hear if you got that job. All kinds of hospital waiting is agonizing.
In our family we are waiting on a baby to arrive. Pregnancy is so long! There are so many unknowns. My daughter is now down to the baby-could-come-at-any-time part of pregnancy. She and I are planners and we are having trouble with our plan making because we DO NOT KNOW WHEN THIS WILL HAPPEN. She is going to the doctor weekly now. Last time I asked her if the doctor said when this will happen and she reminded me rather sternly that they do not tell you WHEN.
I am planning to be there when this impossible-to-know thing happens but I live 5 hours away so how do I plan? How do I wait? How do they wait? How does anyone FaithWait verses plain old anxious waiting?
A few tips for FaithWaiting:
Do what you can. In my case that includes keeping gas in my car, suitcase mostly packed, making lots of casseroles to fill my daughter’s freezer when I get there, keeping my phone nearby.
Remember what you know. God is faithful. All will be well. You are not and never were in control. You are in God’s hands. Waiting is a gift, a discipline and an exercise in faith.
Trust. Today’s entry in Jesus Calling reminds us of God’s word to us, Waiting on Me means directing your attention to Me in hopeful anticipation of what I will do. It entails trusting Me with every fiber of your being, instead of trying to figure things out yourself. Waiting on Me is the way I designed you to live: all day, every day.
Pray. Pray for peace as you wait.
Keep your routines and rituals. Sometimes keeping a schedule is an act of grace that calms us down and reminds us of God’s presence in the daily routine acts of life. Eat, exercise, work, rest, repeat.
I’ve preached and written before about how hard it must have been for the followers of Jesus on that day of waiting between Good Friday and Easter Sunday. How did they bear it? Can you imagine the sorrow, angst, worry, uncertainty and pain they must have felt? The Bible says very little about that Saturday but I believe it is one of the most important times in the whole Bible because it was a whole day of not knowing when all they could do was FaithWait. I imagine time just painfully crawling that day, oozing with despair.
Waiting is what the Christian life is all about. We do not know the plan. We do not know what the future holds. Most of the time we barely know what God wants us to do.
The difference is we wait as those who have hope. That is FaithWaiting at its finest. Psalm 33:20-22 offers this prayer: We wait in hope for the Lord; God is our help and our shield. In God our hearts rejoice, for we trust in God’s holy name. May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in you.
Casserole by casserole, I FaithWait.
Dr. Cindy Ryan is a pastor, wife, mother of three, breast cancer survivor, Mimosa to Keller and his soon to arrive baby brother and one who waits with hope.