by Renee Leonard Kennedy
(Jude 21, ESV).
At last! Taillights beaming Christmas red, Mom’s station wagon headed up the hill to the Brockmans’ house. My sister helped as we spied on our parents carrying presents from the neighbor’s basement into our car’s trunk.
“Do you see my Barbie dream house?” She squinted through the window.
After they returned home and carried the boxes inside, Mom shushed Dad as they passed our room. The bathroom faucet splashed, then stopped. Closet doors opened and closed. Floors squeaked, then silenced. To my eight-year-old mind, an eternity passed as I waited for them to fall asleep. I inched out of bed and journeyed alone to the den.
Silver tinsel shimmered in the glow of a nightlight. I had come to find the present. Instead, the still, quiet holiness of night called. I sat crisscross-applesauce and eased into the middle of the room. The sheer joy of waiting warmed me like a smoldering fire.
As I aged, anticipation’s joy faded into the desire for ‘insta.’ Insta-food, insta-answer, insta-success. In the last two years I’ve attended many writing conferences. Several literary agents asked deep questions about why I had come.
What if we’re never published? Will I keep writing? What if we wait years for book contracts? Will I give up?
I weighed their words. Instantly.
I’ve re-entered the writing world after walking away for twenty-six years. I allowed scoffers to steal my faith and throw poisonous darts at my writing. For this reason, I’ve read daily the book of Jude. In a few words, Jesus’ half-brother packs his message tighter than a gift-laden trunk to remind us evil exists, many fall away, and beloved ones wait.
Webster’s 1828 Dictionary defines waiting as “staying in expectation.” Israel had waited centuries for the long expected Savior. True to his word, a child was born who lived a sinless life and endured the world’s storehouse of sin. He came as the present awaited by the world. Yet even Jesus waited for his public ministry to start. When it did, heaven broke loose. Good conquered evil. The tortured protagonist stayed faithful, saving His bride. The Hero of Heroes promised the best happy-ever-after ever.
I have reason to enjoy anticipation in night-like seasons of holy stillness. Glory!
Dear Lord, in our writing and waiting, may we stay in expectation of you, our Savior, and never give up. Amen.