I think the things we suffer in the here and now, don’t even matter compared to the glory we are yet to have. Creation itself impatiently waits for God to unveil the glory He has in store for His children. Creation also suffers imperfection, and not of its own choosing, but by the will of God for a greater hope.
For when the children of God are perfected, creation will also be free from the chains of corruption. All creation suffers labor pains in giving birth even till now. Even we who have known the Spirit first, groan with waiting for our adoption, even our bodies then being redeemed in perfection.
To endure this wait would be impossible without hope; but remember, you don’t hope for something that already is. You wouldn’t hope for something you already had.
No. We hope for what is to come, and we do it both with intense desire, and perseverance.
I was sitting in a park one day, feeling the crushing weight of “tomorrow”. What things will happen? When will things happen? Why haven’t they happened yet? Why can’t I make them happen? Why hasn’t God made them happen? All the while I prayed painful prayers based on those questions. All the while I suffered the red burning eyes of restrained tears.
As I ate one cold spoonful of double fudge and peanut butter frozen yogurt after another, to cool the burning of my heart, I was watching the only other occupants of the park at that time. A women and a very young boy, I would guess about four years old.
He was doing nothing notable that a boy in a park on a sunny day wouldn’t do. That was, until a car drove past, turned in, and came to a parked stop. As soon as the operator of the vehicle, a man, exited, the little boy sprinted as fast as his short little legs could carry him, over the one-hundred feet to this man, and he yelled at the top of his lungs…
“Daddy! You are taking forever!”
At the time I observed this, I was sure the boy was not only referencing his father’s pace at crossing the space between he and his son…but the child was clearly shouting his perception of the entirety of the wait for his father to arrive at all.
That is how God told me that He knew.
Waiting… is hard.
I am exhausted by all my weeping. My throat is dried out with wailing.
My eyes are swollen shut by crying; all while waiting for God.
What is it that you are waiting for? Is it even possible to name something we are not waiting for? Even things we dread, that we do not want to occur, in some style or another, we still wait for them. After those things we are left with everything else, which is more than less, “everything”…that we wait for.
I won’t bother with a list of examples because we all know the examples we could list. The list isn’t the focus of this devotional anyways. What is being examined here… is the wait.
Seconds go by like hours. Hours go by like days. Days go by like weeks. Weeks go by like months. Months go by like years…and the years feel like an un-segmented singular endless suffering of anticipation and the unknown.
The agony is unbearable. We strain and strive in our thoughts while we are awake. We struggle and search in our nightmares while we sleep. We barter, and beg, demand, and plead, rage, and grovel, in our prayers. We look to find anything, we thrash and rummage through every idea seeking anything we can grasp that will take the uncertainty out of the equation. We desperately crave anything that will free us from the chains of powerlessness, and give us some influence, anything at all so we can cause something to happen… rather than merely being an observer who waits for what we cannot control.
When all that is gone, and we are drained away to almost nothing, we can be found lying on the floor as if dead, and if someone was inspecting us closely enough, a whisper like a last breath would be heard escaping our barely parted lips…
“God, do not let me be put to shame for my hoping in You.”
God has heard that plea before. It can be found written thousands of years ago, more than once in Psalm 25 and Psalm 31. God will hear that plea again, and again, from you, from me, and from others.
I am sorry, but, this is not about me telling you that everything will work out to your joy if you just keep it up a bit longer. I do not know your tomorrow. However what this is about, is I do know something about your “now”, and that is that God knows your suffering.
You see, to Him we are just like that little boy. To Him we are not as strong as we foolishly convince ourselves to be. He knows that we at are strongest, are exceedingly frail.
God knows our substance;
He remembers we are made from dirt.
Humans are like grass.
Like a dandelion in the middle of a field.
It blooms, and a breeze blows it apart.
Not even the ground it sprouted from remembers it anymore.
See? God knows that! Those are verses 14-16, but look how all that description started in verse 13!
The same way a father has compassion on his child,
that is how God has compassion on those who put their trust in Him.
I don’t know what is going to happen to me tomorrow, but I do know that I am loved by God, and that is all I need to know while I wait. That is all I need to know so I can say to my soul…
Soul! Why are you in despair?
Why are you in so much anguish?
Put all expectations in God.
I will yet praise Him.
He is my God, who saves me.
That is all I need to know so I can say to my heart…
Wait for God! Have courage!
God will strengthen your heart!
I am telling you!
Wait, for God!
I have no shame in admitting that in Gods eyes I am no man.
I am merely a little boy crying for his father.
Because you are His children, God sent the Spirit of Jesus into your hearts, shouting,
That is all I need to know to believe God cares, when I come running to Him in prayer crying out with all my soul…
“Daddy! You are taking forever!”
Mark Vincent Vicari †
I have recorded audio versions of this, and my other devotionals, in formats that both do, and do not have background music. They can be listened to at…
I am an author, theologian and philosopher
I hope to be a teacher and a public speaker.
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and much more that I’ve written at my website…
Please note – If Bible verses are not specifically noted as being taken directly from the King James Version, I paraphrase all Bible verses that I use. The primary reason for this is in putting a verse into my own words I clearly expose how I read and understood the verse myself. Please always take the time to compare my understanding of a verse with the verse itself from your preferred translation of the Bible.
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