As we begin the season of Advent, we focus on waiting well throughout the many seasons of life.
I want to be a child again. I want to run around in my bathing suit and not suck in my belly. I want to wear flip flops that aren’t suede. I want to ride my bike with no handlebars and not be afraid of cars or hitting abandoned cats.
I want to jump on top of beds, mattresses and box springs. I want to throw pillows full of feathers at your face. I want you to do the same.
I want to get bruises on my arms from wrestling with you in the green grass, and never think twice about romance. I want to tear up weeds and throw them in the air like they’re rose petals and eat honeysuckles until dinnertime when my stomach will be filled.
I want to grow up slowly and take your hand in mine and not notice its roughness, but only its beauty. I want to frolic and forget.
I want to think that money grows on trees and that neither greed nor frugality is ever necessary. I want to look at clocks and declare my lucky number is always there! Because it is. Because I believe it to be so. Because I believe.
There are, of course, nightmares and fears and experiences that have overtaken what I want to truly remember. I only want to remember the simple things. I only desire the pure thoughts of my childhood, when nothing mattered but that I had my peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch; how it was cut or how much jelly glopped out of it was of little consequence.
I wrote that about two years ago, ironically when I started “official” adulthood. When I began that “daily grind” of waking up at normal hours (read: working) and attempting to make sure my every move, from my clothes to my emails, spoke: “She’s mature.”
That was around the time my decisions would begin to have significant consequences on my future. For the first time, I felt that I couldn’t do anything I wanted. I had to choose. I had to make choices about my passions. What I spent my time on was of critical importance.
It also seemed to be the point at which I began “waiting,” at least according to the world and its never-ending expectations. I was waiting on a ring. I was waiting for the chance to buy a car. I was waiting to move out of my parents’ place. I was waiting to find my place as a working young adult.
Fast forward to now and I realize just how much my waiting became an act of faith. A good number of the pressures the world lays down on my shoulders to accomplish, at any given point, are not fulfilled. And for the ones that are fulfilled, God carefully designed my time of “waiting” to fit His perfect, specific plan.
And He has a way of helping us through our waiting. God turns our disappointments – we could’ve guessed it – into something all for the better. When we think our waiting is a disappointment, sometimes God is telling us that there are simply things we should not wait for, like men who cannot make the choice to love, a professional status to define our worth, or for all of our life choices to align with our parents’ opinions.
But if there is One I eagerly await this Advent, He is Christ Jesus. And He, I know, will never disappoint.
As children, we had a childlike heart; trusting our parents while we waited to grow older and wiser. This Advent, ask Christ to grant you a childlike, Christ like heart. Let us trust Him in all seasons of our waiting.
— This post originally appeared on Encourage and Teach website of the Diocese of Arlington, where Natalie is a regular writer. Follow Natalie on Twitter @nataliejplumb