Right now my life is all about waiting. We are in the middle of a kitchen remodel. It is a slow, painful, and messy process. I’m very excited for the finished product, but in the meantime I’m just waiting. Most mornings I’m at home waiting for the workers to show up. Right now I’m literally waiting for the drywall mud to dry. I’m also waiting on our countertop slab to be cut to size. So much waiting.
The rest of my house is in a state of waiting as well. I can’t maintain organization in my home since other rooms are housing kitchen items at the moment. Cleaning is futile during the construction phase because of this layer of constant dust that swirls throughout our house. I can’t even decorate for holidays due to the mayhem and dust. There were no Halloween decorations this year, as we were waiting for the construction to begin, and no Dia De Los Muertos altar either.
I’m also personally in a stage of waiting in my life. I’ve expected, or maybe hoped, for some personal correspondence from a friend that hasn’t come. I know everyone is busy this time of year and I know that I’m not the center of everyone’s universe, but days of a quiet phone and empty inbox start to feel mountainous and sad.
All this waiting. It’s almost perfect considering that this is the season of Advent. Advent is the four weeks leading up to Christmas and it is literally the time for preparing and waiting. We are waiting both in the present and in the past. We are remembering the wait leading up to Christ’s birth as we count down to Christmas Day but we are also still waiting for him to return in the future as promised.
Waiting is difficult. Sometimes we feel lost or forgotten as we try to be patient. Kids use the little chocolate-filled Advent Calendars to help them count down the days until Christmas. It’s not so easy as an adult. I think it is harder because we have no control during the waiting phase. I can’t jump in and finish my kitchen. I can’t keep hounding friends for attention or quicken the delivery of mail.
Advent is also a time for preparation and reflection. That is where the action comes in. This is where we can make progress in our lives as we await big things to happen. I have much to prepare for. I can have everything bought, wrapped, and carefully planned so that the minute my kitchen is done I can jump our household right into Christmas mode. I can also be praying for my friends and family and thinking of ways to make their holidays a little brighter and easier, knowing that we are all stressed and busy this time of year. Waiting doesn’t have to be passive. It can be active and fulfilling. Christ’s second coming may or may not be in my lifetime but I can be seeking ways to deepen my faith while I wait.
What are you waiting for?