Indeed, none of those who wait for You will be ashamed…For You I wait all the day…For I wait for You, (25:3, 5, 21).
Waiting is a motif in this psalm of intimacy. When we love someone we wait for them with longing, when we are intimate with someone our heart desires his or her presence. Biblical waiting is anything but passive, it is anything but complacent, it is anything but status quo; Biblical waiting is longing, expectation, looking, searching the horizon – it is visualizing the appearance of our Beloved. When will He appear? How shall He appear? Through whom shall He appear? In what set of circumstances will He make Himself known?
We are not a generation that is keen on waiting; we want action and entertainment. Do we mistake excitement for His Presence? Do we confuse emotion for His embrace? This is not to say that we should not be excited in His Presence, nor that our hearts should not be lifted up in joy when we sense Him palpably – it is simply to ask whether or not we have a propensity to confuse emotional religious hormones with intimacy with God.
When a loved one has not arrived when expected and we have had no communication with him or her, when we anxiously look through the window for our beloved’s arrival – what is it we desire if not our beloved’s presence?
Waiting for our beloved accepts no substitute. If I am waiting for my wife no other arrival will satisfy my longing and yearning for her; no other friend and certainly no other woman can dampen the desire of my heart for my wife – my eyes search the road for my wife and for her alone. Do I wait for Jesus alone in the depths of my being? Do I yearn for Him today? Do I wait for Him? Look for Him? Expect to see Him any moment?
The other day a friend dropped in to visit while my wife was on a daytrip – it was toward the end of the day and I was anticipating my wife’s return at any moment. While I was delighted to see my friend, whom I had not seen for a few years, and while he had my focus and attention during his visit, my heart and mind continued to look for my wife’s return. I visited with my friend within the framework of looking for my wife. Am I living today in the framework of looking for Jesus every hour, every minute, every moment? Do I love His appearing on a daily basis?
There is much to distract us in life, much to seduce us, much that beckons as substitutes for Him in the form of instant gratification with us at the center – this is true within and without the professing church – is He our heart’s desire? Are we waiting for Him?