Do you ever feel like you’ve been waiting for something that you’ve been promised for so long that you’re beginning to doubt it’s ever coming?
The Jews probably felt that two thousand years ago.
God had promised them a savior but then he want quiet – for four HUNDRED years.
Many in Israel still believed and were waiting for the promised Messiah but it must have been very hard.
Then, all of a sudden, the Savior arrived! Many people heard and saw that the Messiah had come – but he was just a baby and so, more waiting was needed.
Thirty years later, that tiny baby had grown to be a man and he embarked on a ministry journey which would take him around Israel and, eventually, to the cross.
A LONG Wait
Thirty years is a LONG time though.
Can you even imagine being one of those who heard that the savior had arrived? Whether it was from the shepherds, or from the stir caused in Jerusalem by the travelers from the East, or from Simeon and Anna in the temple, or from Elizabeth and Zechariah or even from Mary and Joseph themselves, hundreds of people would have heard the good news – the One they had been waiting for had come!
But then… nothing. No overthrow of the Romans, no miracles being performed, no rousing speeches, no public appearances. Nothing. For over thirty years.
With an average life expectancy of between 40 and 60 years, most of the people who heard about the birth of the Messiah were probably dead before he did anything even vaguely exciting.
What an anticlimax. I imagine a lot of people were confused and disenchanted by the complete lack of any further evidence of the savior in that thirty-something years.
I Want it Now
In this day and age, we don’t like waiting. History shows us that the human race never has liked to wait but today we have an instant society like never before.
We want it all and we want it NOW!
The problem is, God doesn’t work that way. God makes promises years, even decades in advance and has no problem with us waiting to see their fulfillment. Just as Jesus arrived on earth thirty-something years before he ‘arrived’ in the fullness of the word, God’s promises to us and his call on our lives often arrive years before they come to fruition.
Waiting… Still Waiting
I’ve never been big on the Church traditions so I think this year, thanks to Helen and a few others, is the first time that I have realized that Advent is the time of waiting.
As we go through this advent period, waiting for the day of rejoicing, the day we celebrate our Saviour’s birth, take a moment to remember that God doesn’t work on our time scale. The things he has promised you that you have not seen the fruition of are not forgotten, you are just still in the time of waiting – and preparation.
If you’re waiting for God, hold on. He might make you wait but one day the waiting will be over – and it will all be worth it!
Question: Do you feel like you’ve been waiting for so long for something that God promised that you’re beginning to doubt it will ever happen?