I’ve been doing a lot of waiting the past year or so. Waiting for appointments to be made … waiting for tests results … waiting in waiting rooms. infusion bays or in treatment rooms (47 1/2 plus minutes for doctors who “will be right in.”)
Oh, and there is the waiting in the fast food line for my morning tea on the way to the doctors and for the red lights to turn green and for that driver who is crawling along the busy highway instead of going with the traffic flow.
The thing is. We spend a good part of our lives waiting.
Have you thought about how many times the Bible tell us to wait?
Here are just a few of the verses …
Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. (Psalm 27:14)
Lord, I wait for you; you will answer, Lord my God. (Psalm 38:15)
I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope. (Psalm 130:5)
Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him! (Isaiah 30:18)
For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. (Romans 8:19)
While we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:13)
I could do an entire blog post on each verse.
“Waiting” in the Old Testament is usually used as in waiting on God’s care.
In the New Testament “wait” is usually used in the sense of waiting for Christ’s return.
Here’s the thing.
Do you know the biblical meaning of waiting? This is a lot different from our impatient selves. The root meaning of waiting in the Bible is to bind together even to the the extent of being twisted together. When we wait for the Lord, we are close to Him, recognizing His Sovereignty and knowing He is in control. Waiting in the Bible is a good thing, not something to impatiently complain about.
However, we are human and in our humanness, waiting becomes very different.
From our earthy perspective we often think of waiting as wasting time. And much of the time it is. (Sometimes I think about replacing waiting room magazines with my own magazines so we’d have something to read more recent than 2013.)
How about if we all work at being more patient waiters rather than wasting-time waiters? And what if we would teach out kids the same thing?
In the car …
1. Have good conversation. (Ask your kids thoughtful questions.)
2. Make up stories together. You say the first line, the kids add lines.
3. Listen to audio books – there are many out there.
4. Memorize verses together.
5. Play “I spy” (especially good for traffic lights or when caught in traffic.)
In a waiting room …
1. Start a conversation with someone who is also tired of waiting. (Of course, with kids, this should probably be with another child – though there are circumstances where an older person might start chatting and you’re sitting right there, so it’s no problem.)
2. See who can find the oldest magazine and most out-of-date news.
3. Read a book – either together or individually.
4. List questions you’ve always wondered about. If you have a smart phone, help your kids find the answer. (You ask your unanswered questions too like what IS the friendliest breed of dog?)
5. Start telling a Bible event and then stop and see how far your kids can get finishing the story.
Be creative – so many things we can do instead of wasting time and getting impatient.
One of the best ways to pass the time is to thank God for His care and that we can WAIT on Him.
(Oh, and you can always write a blog post on waiting!)