April 26: waiting (2 Samuel 1; Psalm 140; Matthew 13)

Why doesn’t God do something?

It is a question that may never have a totally satisfactory answer in this life. We are not given a direct answer to this question, but the parables in Matthew 13 point us toward the answer. These parables are all about waiting, and waiting is what we find difficult. The last time I had my hair cut, I expressed surprise when I did not have to wait. My hair stylist told me she is surprised by how many people leave when told the wait is just ten minutes. We enter the drive-thru lane and grow impatient when that lane requires a wait. We do not live in a wait and see world. But listen to the lesson from the parables: wait!

The farmer waits for the harvest, watching as the weeds grow alongside the wheat. The birds must wait for the mustard seed to grow into a bush. The woman baking bread must wait for the leaven to work its way through the dough. Jesus’ followers did not want to wait. They wanted immediate change. They were not interested in God’s timetable.

It is not that God cannot act suddenly and decisively. Look to Good Friday and Easter and what God can do. The lesson for today is a difficult lesson – patience. Not only can we not get everything we want when we want it, but we should not. Wait and see. God will act. Wait and see. Learn the lesson of patience.

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