December 1, 2021

Some words from Henri Nouwen…

“Waiting is not a very popular attitude…Most people consider waiting a waste of time.

Perhaps this is because the culture in which we live is basically saying, “Get going! Do something! Show you are able to make a difference! Don’t just sit there and wait!”  

For many people, waiting is an awful desert between where they are and where they want to go. And people don't like such a place…

Waiting is even more difficult because we're so fearful…

People are afraid — afraid of inner feelings, afraid of other people, and also afraid of the future.

Fearful people have a hard time waiting because when we are afraid we want to get away from where we are…

All the figures who appear in the first pages of Luke’s Gospel are waiting. Zechariah and Elizabeth are waiting.

Mary is waiting.

Simeon and Anna, who were there in the temple when Jesus was brought in, are waiting.  The whole opening scene of the good news is filled with waiting people. And right at the beginning all those people in some way or another hear the words 'Do not be afraid. I have something good to say to you.'  These words set the tone and context.  Now Zechariah and Elizabeth, Mary, Simeon and Anna are waiting for something new and good to happen to them.”


“Fearful people have a hard time waiting because when we are afraid we want to get away from where we are.”

Take a moment and ask the LORD to show you any fears you may have.  

Wait quietly and if He reveals anything to you that resonates with you confess that fear to Him.  Confession just means to agree with God.  Acknowledge your fear and hear His words to you: “Do not be afraid.”  Inhale slowly, deeply as you hear His words to you today.  Then ask Him if He has anything else “good to say to you” today.  Give Him some time to answer. Wait for Him to speak to your heart. It may be a thought you’ve never had before, or a scripture verse that suddenly comes to mind, or you may experience a deep peaceful silence.  As you release your fear to Him, receive what He has for you today.  

Enjoy the waiting.

[excerpted from A Spirituality of Waiting by Henri Nouwen]

Henri Nouwen 372X372

Henri J.M. Nouwen was a Dutch-born Catholic priest, professor, pastor, and author of thirty-nine books on the spiritual life.

About the Author Mary Goldring

​In my faith journey God has always used the writings of other Christ followers to encourage, inspire, and challenge me to a deeper walk with Him. My desire is that He might do the same for you as you read the writings shared in these devotionals. Blessings!

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