Last week I threw out the question of what it means to wait actively. I don’t think it’s really quite fair for me to ask you a question and not answer it myself.
So what is active waiting in my world?
After wrestling with the concept this week and some really great conversations over coffee, I came to this conclusion: Waiting is not the word. Waiting still seems to imply a sitting still, a holding of breath for something.
James 5 uses the metaphor of the farmer waiting for his crops. The Greek word used, ekdechomai, implies waiting with expectation. (That’s right, I whipped out the concordance on this one.) The farmer isn’t just waiting for whatever to happen. He is waiting for fruit. He does what it takes to ready the field and prepare for the harvest.
The farmer invests in his work.
So what does this mean for little ol’ me?
Lately, I’ve been wrestling with the purpose of my singleness and where the boundary lines have fallen for me. I’ve also recently been a part of some great conversations on the needs and future of ministry for single young adults. Great things that stir in me a passion and desire to see growth; a longing for God to awake hunger for Him in the hearts of people in this stage of life.
And what is one thing that singles are told time and time again? Especially single women?
“Wait on God.” “Good things come to those who wait.” And then my personal favorite, “True love waits.”
But what does that mean? Are we supposed to sit around and do nothing while we wait for godly prince charming to stride in with his Toms-clad feet and Greek New Testament and whisk me away to a mission field in Asia?
Geeze, I certainly hope not.
I have observed a lot of women, who have been told for years to wait, grow frustrated, disillusioned, and bitter. What they have been told to sit and wait patiently for not come. I feel that tension myself,
So what do we do? Ya know, when there’s not much you can do.
We invest. We invest in where we are and what God is doing in us and in our communities. We seek out the input of older wiser counsel. We seek contentment while still pursuing growth. We serve.
So what does this mean for me personally? I want to start to build community with both women and men and provide context for thoughtful conversation. Essentially, I want to open my home for gatherings and encourage deeper discussion through thoughtful, others-focused questions.
I want to continue to study the word and become more firmly rooted in my identity through truth.
I want to explore the gifts I have been given further. I want to write like crazy and learn more about marketing.
I want growth. I want to see God bring it about in my life and want to watch it happen in the lives around me.
And, yes, this may be an idealistic rant of a hopeless romantic, but it is a rant I offer up to the father to do with whatever he sees fit.
We have been placed where we are in life for good reason, whether we see that or not.
So we can allow our discontentment to fester into bitterness. We can allow are hearts to harden as what we may want does not arrive in our timing. If that’s the case, we’re not really usable for God’s purpose.
Or we can enter into the adventure with God, wrestling with the tension of where we’ve been placed and where we wish we were. We can encounter him on a deeper level as we seek in invest in the stage he has intentionally placed us.
I would love to hear any more of your thoughts if you’ve been wrestling with the what it means to wait. Comment and join the discussion.