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Focus on Faith: It's worth the wait

My granddaughter is 19 months old. She uses phrases and sentences already. And I am astounded at how she is able to process language and concepts. However, one concept that is not so strongly developed is the one that has to do with 'waiting.' You wouldn't expect a young toddler to have a patient nature, that's for sure. But her parents are interested in having her start to understand what 'wait' means. So, as with other words that Frances uses, she learned them first by sign language. My daughter has recently taught Frances the sign for "waiting." Now, when my daughter says, "Frances, can you wait?" or "Frances, you need to wait," Frances shows her mom the sign for 'wait.' In that way, Frances thinks that showing the sign for 'wait' is what waiting is. Right after using the sign, Frances again impatiently asks for what she wants. Grandma thinks it is cute, of course. And so does Frances' mom. My daughter says, "I know the sign does not quite convey to Frances the concept of waiting, but it gives her something to do while her understanding of 'waiting' develops!"

Have you ever noticed that the words "patients" and "patience" are pronounced virtually the same? Maybe that is no accident! Proverbs tells us, ...wait for the Lord, and he will help you (20:22). Yet, that might not make the waiting any easier.

Pastors are regular hospital visitors. Somewhere in those hospitals, mothers are in labor. At those moments they are experiencing great labor pains; great discomfort; maybe even great anxiety. But when those babies are born, the mothers' pain and anxiety will subside from their minds, as they are overwhelmed with joy at what now is and with the hope of

what is yet to be.

Pastor Paul writes this to the Christians in Rome: I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us...But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience (8:18, 25).

Even if we are not in the maternity ward, we can look ahead with joy and hope toward what is yet to be. For our loving God — the God who waited for three days before raising Christ from death for all of us — continues to assure us that patience yields fruit. Ask any new mother about God's ultimate blessing. It's worth the wait!