The Gift of Waiting

Amy Clemens

Read: Romans 8:18-27

But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. (v. 25)

During Advent, I hear a lot about waiting, but truth be told, I get tired of waiting in the same way each year; after all, I know Christmas is coming. True, I await Christ’s second coming and the promises of heaven. But perhaps I also wait for the full impact of Christ’s first coming to wake me up to the hope Advent fairly shouts: God loved the world, and put into motion a rescue without demanding that we first become acceptable. He became like us, rather than the other way around. “God and sinners, reconciled,” because God moved, not us.

I wax and wane in my faith and faithfulness. I respond to the light by hiding more often than I wish. But Jesus makes his advent in those dark places too, constantly pursuing and inviting me to have hope and be patient again. Romans 8:24 promises “waiting does not diminish us, any more than waiting diminishes a pregnant mother. We are enlarged in the waiting” (The Message).

The gift of waiting is an enlarged capacity for hope. The more we see our own inability to perfect ourselves or the world around us, the more our hope must stretch, expand, and enlarge our faith in God. His plan in the advent of Jesus was amazing enough to create hope in us for what we can’t yet see.

—Amy Clemens

Giver of good gifts, as I wait, wake me up fully to the hope your advent shouts.