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  • Writer's pictureGail Edmonson

Advent - A Season for Waiting

A few weeks ago I stopped by a Starbucks near my home to get my favorite hot drink - a vanilla chai latte, no water, and extra hot. I hadn’t been to a Starbucks in quite some time since I usually drink coffee or tea at home. On that day, I ordered my drink and stood waiting for the barista to make it - which I figured wouldn’t take long because there was only one person in line in front of me. Yet, I waited. And waited. I noticed that quite a number of people kept popping in, going right up to the counter and getting their orders without going through the line. I knew that ordering on the app has been a “thing” but I’ve never used it. After all, I can wait. I am a patient person. Or so I thought.

Well, a week or so later I decided to go to Starbucks again. And once again I stood there waiting...and waiting while other people dropped in and picked up their orders without waiting. Hmmm.

So, the next time I decided to go to Starbucks I figured out how to order my drink on the app. I, too, could be one of those people who doesn’t have to wait! Isn’t it amazing how the Lord speaks through things we would never have thought of? As I pulled up to the Starbucks and prepared to run in and grab my drink, the Lord reminded me, in His oh so gentle way, about two words He has placed on my heart this Advent season: longing and waiting. I chuckled out loud, “Lord, I am not as patient a person as I had imagined I was!”

The point of this story isn’t that we should wait in line patiently at a coffee shop. The real point is the question God posed to me later in the day as I pondered why He might draw my attention to that moment at a coffee shop, “Gail, what do you miss when you are not willing to wait?” I don’t have answers to this question, but I have a distinct impression that this is a question I will be asking myself on many occasions throughout the Advent season.

The truth is, I have entered this 2020 Advent season with such a sense of longing and anticipation.

I am excited about seeing how God will meet me as I reflect with Him on those two words that mark this season of Advent for me: waiting and longing.

My breath prayer for this season is: How I long for you, come Lord Jesus, come.

With Advent being the beginning of the church year, I find myself excited - with a sense of anticipation about new beginnings and a fresh start. I dream about the conversations that God and I will have in this season, how He might lead me into new areas, or unfold a fresh sense of His love and presence with me? I also think about how I want to be different in everyday life. What new thing might He offer to me to begin in this season? What new rhythms and practices will he invite me into with Him? I am experiencing the wonder and joy of waiting with anticipation.

And I am asking myself that question - What might I miss if I am not willing to wait - on Him and on His timing? This question encourages me to be more content in waiting and in staying in this place of longing for more of Him.

As you find yourself waiting on the Lord in this season, I invite you to consider this question, “What might I miss if I am not willing to wait?” Then pray, “Lord, let me wait patiently and wisely with you.”


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Through the Unexpected Grace Blog I offer encouragement to help you engage deeply with Father, Son, and Spirit. I do this by posting some of what I am learning, along with resources for your journey - such as prayer practices, articles, books, workshops, and retreats.


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