Waiting with confidence

Staff_team_2015 Posted by Linda Abwa on Wed, 09 Dec 2015 | 1 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to del.icio.us Post this to Facebook

As a family we have been in a season of waiting for many months. Waiting for the move back to Ireland, waiting for the right visas to let us all be together again, waiting to be able to register for school; and now we are in the official season of waiting, Advent.

I confess that I have struggled with all the waiting we have had to do, and still have to face in the coming months. There has been weeping and questioning and doubt and fear and even occasionally the temptation to retrace our lives back to a point where everything seemed certain and there was no waiting to be done.

My six-year-old daughter however, has much more spiritual questions on her mind as she waits. She wondered aloud to me last week why Jesus doesn’t just come back again right now, because then we would all be together as a family with no more waiting.

I had to break the news to her that we also have to wait for Jesus to return. When she asked why, I explained that he was so patient and loving that he would not come back until all the peoples in the world had heard about him and had the opportunity to know him (2 Peter 3:9). She replied “Well then we better go and tell more people about Jesus.”

The reason I weep and endlessly petition God for the outcome I desire is because I have no certainty about what might happen or what I can do to bring the wait to an end. The reason my daughter is not weeping as she waits for Christs return is because she knows that when she, as part of the global church, has reached every nation tribe and tongue then there is absolute certainty that he will return and wipe each and every tear from our eyes.

The anticipation of Christmas during advent is a joyous waiting. We light special candles, listen to treasured music and open our eyes a little wider at all the wonders around in expectation of the real wonder of ‘God with us’. It is joyous because the expectation is already fulfilled and we are certain of the outcome; He is already here with us.

This sense of dimly lit awe during the Advent wait, reminds me of a powerful video that we’ve used at CMSI events this year. It’s called: Blessed be Egypt my people and it’s worth a watch. In it, church leaders in Egypt speak of the unbearable persecution suffered by the church in recent years. As they speak of the martyrdom of believers however, their words are not fearful or doubtful, there are no whining tears of a God who has abandoned them. Rather Anne Emile Saki, lecturer at a Cairo Seminary speaks in hushed awe:

He cares and suffers with us. That’s what incarnation means.

How can the Egyptian church be so courageous? How can the bishops be so bold as to tell their people to endure persecution and count it an honour?

Perhaps because, like my six year old, the Incarnation gives them unquestionable certainty. Perhaps because they know that our whole lives are an Advent season leading to the certain hope, not only of ‘God with us’, but of ‘us with God’ in renewal and perfection together with all nations. Perhaps because they know that Jesus is coming again with the same certainty that we know 25th December will bring turkey and presents.

If only there was something we could do to make him come more quickly…



Jenny Christie said Thu, 10 Dec 2015 08:45AM
beautiful xo

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