Immediately, one pictures a damp grey station where tired and gloomy passengers hover in limbo between trains. Or a drab doctor’s lounge with broken toys, brown curtains and magazines that were old in Abraham’s day. Or just a feeling of agitation with no satisfactory result.
What is waiting? It is a time in which that which we are expecting or anticipating has not yet occurred. It is a pause in the process of something. It holds frustration, uncertainty, often loneliness.
At some point in our lives, and likely more than once, every one of us will encounter this moment of “not happening”. Most of the time we will have no choice but to, well, wait.
So here I find myself in this exact situation. I am waiting. Of course, there are many things for which I am waiting (in fact, it seems that they often overlap each other, so that I am always waiting for something).
Previously, my waiting consisted of metaphorically twiddling my thumbs, or watching an event with hawk-like tenacity until it finally happened. Yet a thought recently struck me, when I had resigned myself to waiting yet again on something that was beyond my control of time, events and the universe in general.
What would it look like if I chose instead to “actively wait”? And what would that mean?
For me, it meant purposely turning my waiting heart towards God, and deliberately choosing to seek Him more, include Him more, know Him more. And to know that God knows. He knows that I am waiting. He knows that I am yearning. And he knows that, just around the corner, there is a faint but very real glimmer that will shed a whole new light upon that for which I am waiting.
So here I am. I am waiting.
But I choose not to wait idly. I choose not to be bored, or weary, or trapped in that grey and dreary station. I am not throwing my hands up in despair. I am not flitting off to another queue.
I am actively waiting. I am seeking and learning and growing and just – just living!
And suddenly, waiting is no longer a swear word. Or a dreaded task at which I cringe. Or a tiresome tick of the clock that I face with resignation.
Waiting is a new experience.
Waiting is an opportunity bursting with possibility.
Waiting is a time in which something is definitely happening.
© Emma McGeorge 2013