The other day, we met our oldest son, his wife and our two grandchildren for lunch. Knowing our grandson’s thirteenth birthday is just a few weeks away I asked him how he’d be celebrating his special day.
“I think we are going to an NBA game,” he said looking hopefully at both of his parents who just shrugged their shoulders.
When he left the table to use the restroom, his parents filled us in on what they have in store for his upcoming birthday. Indeed, they will be taking him to an NBA game, but they will not be revealing that surprise to him until just before his birthday. He will continue to anticipate until then.
Though my grandson cannot say for sure that he will get what he wants for his birthday, he’s put his hope in the right people, his parents. He is certain his parents are fully aware of his birthday wish because he’s spoken to them about it several times.
He also knows, from experience, that his parents care about his desire and even though he is not a perfect son, his parents still love him and consider his request as a legitimate one. And though my son and daughter-in-law do not always give him everything he wants, he’s still happy they are his parents.
Consequently, this relationship reminds me of mine with God. I want to know the answers concerning my requests. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t anticipate a reply of some kind from God. Yet, like my grandson, I too am left to anticipate answers to my requests.
I’ve appealed to God for the salvation of family members, but they continue to disbelieve. God knows about my friend who needs healing, yet they remain burdened by their illness. Though I’ve petitioned God to enlighten a prodigal child, that child remains in the dark. Sometimes, anticipating God’s answers to my request can make me feel suspended between hope and wondering.
But, when I remember that I’ve set my hope on the right person, that he hears me, and that he loves me, no matter my imperfections, then waiting becomes a little easier and my confidence stays firm. I don’t want to give up when I find myself waiting for God to answer, because God does not make us wait in vain.
Why bother to anticipate? We can expect good things from God, even if we have to wait.