Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Why Wait?

None of us like to wait. We seem to always find ourselves in a hurry. We are impatient. Our instant culture demands that we get going quickly. But, waiting is a fact of life.
Have you ever found yourself frustrated as you: Wait at a red light, wait in line, wait for payday, wait for the weekend, wait for a relationship to improve, wait for a promotion, wait to get married, wait to overcome an illness, wait until next year… 

Here are six benefits to waiting:
  • Waiting inspires creativity. Because we want it now, we tend to use shortcuts to achieve, posses, correct, or arrive. As a result, those shortcuts often generate a new set of problems that we must navigate in order to achieve, posses, correct, or arrive. By using our creativity, it causes us to think within ourselves for a solution. (I believe that everyone is creative because we were made in the image of the Great Creator)
  • Waiting uncovers selfish motives. Sometimes when we want something or want something to happen quickly, we don’t consider the origin of that desire. By waiting, we can examine our hearts and see if the desire is rooted in selfishness or pride. If we find that it does, we may need to reevaluate the value and purpose of what we are seeking.
  • Waiting defers to others. Don’t you hate it when someone pulls out in front of you while driving? Unless it requires a “tire screeching, near-miss, groceries dumped on the floor” braking maneuver, your dislike is usually about someone getting in front of you. Or what about having to wait at the doctor’s office? What if a parent with a sick child was squeezed-in ahead of you, or several other patients scheduled before you had needs that required special attention. In most situations where we must wait, we are allowing others to go in front of us. That’s basic Christianity.
  • Waiting prevents unnecessary debt. When it comes to purchases, we see what we want, and then we buy it. If we don’t have the money on hand, we finance it. Simple. But, it creates months or even years of added burden that brings an entirely new set of pressures that eclipse the pressure of doing without that thing. Do we really need it? Do we really need the upgrade? Is brand new required, or will used suffice? (See benefit #1 above.)
  • Waiting adds value to what you are waiting for. We are not only an instant culture, but we are also a throwaway culture. The things we possess, the relationships have, the jobs we do, and the activities we engage in are all disposable if something better comes along. If we have waited for something, or waited for someone, it or they take on much more value to us. We are more apt to take care of, more inclined to protect, and more driven to remain loyal.
  • Waiting builds character. Here we find the polar opposite of instant. Most character qualities find themselves rooted in waiting, because character is built over time, and waiting takes time. When it comes to waiting, the character we build is worth far more than the thing we want.
As I write this Blog post, the Powerball Lottery is worth $1.4 billion. The media, both social and professional, have proven our culture’s obsession with instant riches. So why wait? Your move… Or your decision to not move, and simply wait.

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Gina Regis said...

I needed to read this. For me, I think the discipline of waiting is also a valuable antidote to rushing. Of late, I've found myself a tad too busy, especially with the extensive upcoming travel. Rushing from one thing to another seems to have become the norm in this instant culture. Waiting is good, just as pausing is. Well-written, as always. Thanks for the reminder!

Brad Lewis said...

We all need the reminder. Our Western Culture lifestyles promote busyness, and waiting well has become a forgotten discipline. Thanks for your words Gina!

Philip A. Guzman, Esq. said...

Humility comes with waiting. What a wonderful side product!

"For God alone my soul in silence waits." Psalm 62:5

Brad Lewis said...

Agreed Phil... Good word! And I referenced that Psalm this evening during worship.

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