Hurry Up and Wait
By Lauren Alletag | December 3, 2019
Advent as defined by Merriam-Webster: a) the coming of Christ at the Incarnation b) the Second Coming. Then there is advent (note the little “a”): a coming into being or use.
As we creep to the end of 2019, I evaluate how well my New Year’s resolution was put into effect. My resolution was to attempt to find JOY in the most unlikely places. First, I must provide some context as to where I was physically and emotionally back in January.
Our youngest was two months old. Being our third child, we had a general idea of what the next 10 months would look like. I envisioned myself coping with fatigue, dreading teething, changing so many diapers, chasing a toddler, negotiating with a preschooler, tackling never-ending piles of laundry, missing out on social events, doubling my intake of coffee — all while paradoxically watching time pass in extremes, either too fast or too slow.
The days are long, but the years are short. #amiright
Well as the year progressed, my family and I experienced some changes (a move to a different neighborhood) that resulted in challenges (most significantly being double mortgaged for 5 months) where the stress of financial strain + moving with 3 littles + a dog = >5 months subtracted from mine and my husband’s lives. But that’s a story for another time + glass of wine.
Okay, I’m done with the equations.
Amidst it all, I kept my resolution to attempt finding JOY. And as a friend eloquently summed up this entire ordeal she told me, “Lauren, it was never about the house.” She sure was right. In fact, I’m convinced it was about learning how to wait — JOYfully.
Just as we hurried to sell our old home and waited for the right buyer, how often do we approach life with a similar mentality? Perhaps we get caught up thinking the pursuit of life is about acquiring, giving, achieving or purchasing some abstract “thing” and we forget to be still.
The other day I was driving my 3-year-old to preschool, and we were noticing what houses already had Christmas lights put up. Suddenly he shouted out, “Mommy, I can’t wait for allllll the Christmas lights to turn on!” I smiled, and then I got to thinking. Part of the excitement of this time of year is the anticipation. A few reasons I adore Thanksgiving are a) I know Christmas is coming soon b) my husband finally agrees to me playing Christmas tunes 12/7 (I mean it’s not even a full 24/7) and c) I love the fact that we have a holiday solely focused on being thankful.
I’m digressing. Back to my topic! Just as we have childlike anticipation of all the Christmas lights turning on, what if we had the same JOYful anticipation of the ultimate Light coming? In case you didn’t catch it, Light = Jesus. Whoops, I said I was done with equations. My apologies.
I love this:
Maybe that’s the secret?
I once read, “God, Almighty, and Eternal cannot be fit into our plans; we must fit into His.” That’s quite a perspective shift! It reminds me God cannot be limited to this earthly domestication — this human JOYride of an exodus. If there is anything I learned from practicing this year’s resolution, it’s that there is much life to be lived in the waiting. Whether those days are long or the years are short, elements of JOY are ready and willing to fill our cup. It’s just a matter of perspective, eh?
So friends, as we enter this Advent season together, may we all slow down and wait JOYFULLY.