"Once we clearly acknowledge the soul, we can learn to hear it's cries. - Dallas Willard, Renovation Of The Heart."

It takes courage to pursue our dreams. It takes time and patience to unearth buried treasure. But I believe with all my heart that we must do both.



I have been pondering the act of waiting lately. 

A lot.

Advent is a time of waiting, expectant waiting. 

I get impatient in the waiting.  I remember one Christmas as a child.  I was the only one at home and I opened up all my presents and re-wrapped them.  Oh how I was disappointed on Christmas morning, I had spoiled the surprise.  I was no longer expectant…I no longer anticipated what was to come.

I wait for different things now, I wait for dreams to come to pass, I wait for that certain person to change, I wait for myself to change, a relationship to heal, for physical and emotional pain to go away, for healing…

I am reading God Is In The Manger, by Dietrich Bonhoeffer this year during Advent.  I came upon this on day 2 and it really helped me to see waiting in a different way.

“Waiting is an art that our impatient age has forgotten.  It wants to break open the ripe fruit when it has hardly finished planting the shoot.  But all too often the greedy eyes are only deceived; the fruit that seemed so precious is still green on the inside, and disrespectful hands ungratefully toss aside what has so disappointed them.  Whoever does not know the austere blessings of waiting – that is, of hopefully doing without – will never experience the full blessing of fulfillment.

Those who do not know how it feels to struggle anxiously with the deepest questions of life, of their life, and to patiently look forward with anticipation until the truth is revealed, cannot even dream of the splendor of the moment in which clarity is illuminated for them… For the greatest, most profound, tenderest things in the world, we must wait.  It happens not here in a storm but according to the divine laws of sprouting, growing and becoming.”

Expectation, anticipation...

“Waiting does not diminish us; any more than waiting diminishes a pregnant mother.  We are enlarged in the waiting.  We, of course, don’t see what is enlarging us.  But the longer we wait, the larger we become, and the more joyful our expectancy.” ( Romans 8:24,25 - The Message)

What do I do in the waiting – in the interval that may seem a waste of time?

I want to get on with it…on with my dreams…on with my transformation…on with the healing. 

Lucy Shaw says, “Though the protracted waiting time is often the place of distress, even disillusionment, we are counseled in the book of James to “let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete.” Pain, grief, consternation, even despair, need not diminish us.  They can augment us by adding to the breadth and depth of experience, by enriching our spectrum of light and darkness, by keeping us from impulsively jumping into action before the time is ripe, before “the fullness of time.”  I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope.”

Emmanuel – God with us.  God breaks into our lives even in the waiting.

Oh my Lord, keep me from frustration and impatience when I see little evidence of your living and growing in me.  Reassure me that waiting time is not wasted time. That your purposes for us all are large and all-embracing enough to hold firm and prevail, no matter the obstacles or distractions.  You have told us that “now is the accepted time…now is the day of salvation.” But perhaps your “now” is different from ours.  You see our lives from the infinite perspective of eternity, of kairos.  We want immediate action, change, and growth in chronos, in “real time.”  We want to see our problems being resolved. Now.

Help us to realize, as those who love and believe in you, that we, too, are pregnant with Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit, and that day by day we are being enlarged.  Augment our hope, widen our imagination, and nourish our anticipation that the astounding fact “Christ in you, the hope of glory” will turn true in each of us in your good time.

Prayer by Luci Shaw, God with Us

I am taking a blogging break till the New Year.  I want to spend time unwrapping the gifts that are given to me daily, and savoring the ones I already possess.

Grace, peace and love to you all!  


Jeannine said...

Very good perspective, especially this time of year. Thank you for sharing it.

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

jgr said...

Lovely thoughts- exactly what I needed today. Enjoy your break!

Kathy, PaperPumpkin said...

This was beautiful, Mary. It has me thinking... Merry Christmas, dear friend! Blessing to you and to your family. Love, kath

S. Etole said...

Such excellent thoughts. Blessings as you wait and celebrate this season.

Bren said...

Enjoy the unwrapping :-) Inspiring post, he comes to me most deeply in the waiting.
Funny my older sister would snoop and find out what our gifts were and then if though I begged her not too, she just had to tell me what I was getting, bummer! I enjoy the anticipation :-)

Chrissie Grace said...

Merry Christmas sweet Mary! :)

Jennifer Richardson said...

This is SUCH a gift
you leave us with!
These words.....gold.
I'm going to unwrap them slowly
and let them speak to me
several times over the next
Thank you dear, dear Mary.

Introverted Art said...

Amazing thoughts Mary, especially for this time of the year!

Amanda Trought said...

Mary definitely food for thought, we try and make our lives so busy when the one thing the Lord wants us to do is wait, be patient, stand still and to listen. Blessings to you and your family as you take a much deserved rest. Amanda

Bevie said...

It's amazing and I know God lead, how what you share is exactly so helpful at that time!!! Love you sis.. I'm listening to Ceelo Green singing Mary did you know...Beautiful!!!
Merry Christmas!!!

Erin Butson said...

it's so hard to wait. I love the picture of our hearts:"day by day we are being enlarged" such a beautiful reminder. xoxox