We wait for trains and planes and buses…because we know that they are coming…to where we are, to take us where it is we need to go.
In like manner, I am learning to wait on God.
I was thinking about our recent trip to Orlando. Mrs.Pickett, Mrs. Spinks and I got to go with the seniors on their trip. It was a great time. It’s funny, most of our awake time, our minutes, were spent waiting. Waiting on the plane’s departure, waiting for a bus, waiting for our keys, waiting for another bus, waiting for our tickets, waiting for admission, waiting to ride, waiting to eat; you get the picture.
If you were to ask me to detail our trip for you, I would share incidents: a fulfilling moment on the flight – completing the crossword ( Margaret is a mean crossword worker), feeling the travel “rush” as we all pressed through the airport, the exuberance of singing for the happy passengers as we made our way to the hotel, the “clulunk” of the turnstile, the sound of the “many waters” language all about us, the thrill of free-fall and the delight in children’s eyes.
There are pages of such detail, all moments to recount: Hilarious forays, adventuresome romps through crowds, rain dancing and sugar high skipping; all the things that make a trip a tale.
But, if you asked me what I gained, what has remained in me, I will speak not of experience, but of tender, easily unnoticed exchange.
I stood in line to enter experience with them all. In our standing, sitting, lying about the cattle chutes together, we were more joined. These kids that I liked, respected, even those that I wanted to jack slap many school days…I came to love. There is lots of time to fill in lines and not much room to do so. It’s close quarters. With so many strangers about, we, not so much so, became close companions. Children who barely spoke to me in the halls let me cushion and provision the time together. Some leaned on me, some snuck “I don’t really think you are so bad” glances my way, a few even reached over in some tender way to quietly love on me… All of them, let me love them.
That is what waiting is for..is about. Nowhere to go, yet. No way to move on, yet. It’s chosen close quarters, carved out against so much that is unfamiliar and unknown.
Waiting in prayer is the place, the narrow, chute-like place, that we let God be as close as He is.