I came to work late today because we had someone coming to the house this morning. Of course, this means the dreaded "window" - as in, "I'll be there sometime between 8 am and 10 am." I understand that traffic can be unpredictable, and that it is nice to give yourself some wiggle room, but how have we gotten to a point where we let people get away with this?? I sure can't get away with telling my clients that I will meet with them at some point during a multi-hour interval. I can't schedule a deposition to start between 9:30 and 11:30. I can't . . . .
Ok, enough venting. You know where this is going. I was ready at 8, because I had to be. Then I started waiting. In fairness, she called around 8:45 to give me an update and she arrived before 10. But still, I was waiting.
How much of our lives do we spend waiting? Waiting for doctors or dentists who are "running a little behind schedule"? Waiting in an airport for a plane? Waiting for a concert or a movie to start? Waiting for a table at a restaurant? Waiting in lines? I could go on and on. My point is more general: We spend a lot of time waiting. It can be very frustrating. Is my time less important than theirs? Can't they hurry up? Why aren't they ready yet? Sometimes it gets so bad that I just can't take waiting any longer and I complain or I get up and leave.
The thing is, I can see God asking all of these same questions. How hard must it be to see people struggling, to see people feeling alone, to want a relationship with people that for some reason just aren't ready. Yet, amazingly, no matter how long we make Him wait, God does not give up on us. He doesn't complain. He never just walks away. And when we do reach out to Him, He never hesitates to make a point, He never asks what took so long, He never reminds us that we made Him wait. Instead, He welcomes us with love and open arms.
That is something beyond eternal patience. I think it is a profound suggestion of how important each of us are to Him.