Summary: The wait for God is worth it.
Title: Joseph-The Waiting Room
Text: Genesis 39-41
CT: The wait for God is worth it.
Dan McConchie, vice president of government affairs at Americans United for Life, was riding his motorcycle through a suburban intersection when a car came into his lane and pushed him into on-coming traffic. When he woke two weeks later in a Level 1 trauma center, he was a mess. Six broken ribs; deflated left lung, broken clavicle, broken shoulder blade, and five broken vertebrae. Worst of all, amidst all the broken bones, he had a spinal-cord injury that left him a paraplegic. The neurosurgeon told his wife that it would be a "miracle" if he'd ever walk again.
Eight years later Dan is still in a wheelchair.
"What I learned," Dan said, "is that this life isn't for our comfort. Instead, the purpose of this life is that we become conformed to the image of Christ. Unfortunately, that doesn't happen when everything is unicorns and rainbows. It instead happens when life is tough, when we are forced to rely upon God through prayer just to make it through the day. That is when he is most at work in our lives molding us into who he designed us to be."
"My prayers are different today than they were eight years ago. Back then, I looked at God like Santa Claus. I asked him to send nice things my way. Now, I have one prayer that I pray more than any other: 'Lord, may I be able to say at the end of today that I was faithful.'"
Van Morris, Mt. Washington, Kentucky; source; Dan McConchie,"Prayer and Faith in the Midst of Personal Tragedy," Washington Times (3-22-16)
God is there in all our times. We just may realize it more in the bad times. We need to open up and let God have control in all times, good or bad. Waiting on God is a good thing.
So here I sit in the waiting room. The receptionist took my name and recorded my insurance data.
She said, “Please have a seat. We will call you when the doctor is ready to see you.”
I look around. A mother holds a sleeping baby. A farmer looking fellow is looking at a hunting magazine. A lady with a newspaper looks at her watch, gives a big sigh, and continues the task of the hour: waiting.
The waiting room. Not the examination room. That is in the back. Not the consultation room. It is on the other side. Not the treatment room. Exams, consultations and treatments all come at a later time.
The job at hand is the name of the room: the waiting room. We in the waiting room understand our assignment: to wait.
We don’t treat each other. I don’t ask the nurse for a thermometer or a stethoscope. I don’t ask the farmer what medicines he is taking. That is not my job. That is the job of the nurse. My job here is to wait. So that is what I do.
Can’t really say I enjoy waiting. Times moves like frozen oil being poured in a tractor. The clock appears to not be moving at all. Life in slo-motion. We don’t like to wait. We are a get it going generation. We weave in and out of traffic trying to find the fastest lane. We fuss when our phone is slow or the computer fails to download something instantly. We drum our fingers while we wait for a honeybun to heat up in the microwave.
We say, “Come on. Hurry up. I got things to do and places to be”.
We want six pack abs in ten minutes and minute rice in 30 seconds. We don’t like to wait. Not on the doctor. Not on traffic. Not on pizza.
Not On God?
Take a moment and look around you. Do you realize where you are? This planet is God’s waiting room.
The young man over in the corner waiting to grow up and get away from his parents.
The young wife, waiting to get pregnant. They have been trying for so long.
The man sitting there, waiting for a call about a job. He has sent resumes to all kinds of places.
The older lady with the cane. A widow. Been waiting for someone to come by and stop her crying.
Waiting. Waiting on God to give, to heal, to help. Waiting on God to come. We dwell in the land between prayer offered and prayer answered. The land of waiting.
If anyone knew about what God’s waiting room looks like it would be Joseph. He spent a lot of time waiting on God. The problem with reading Joseph’s story for us is it takes less than an hour to read. This gives the impression that all of Joseph’s trials and struggles too took place one morning before lunch. We’d be wiser to space out our reading over a couple of decades to get a real feel of how long it took.