Patience is not one of my virtues. I am lousy at waiting to be perfectly honest. When I was a kid, I was not the only one who didn’t wait well as Christmas approached. Mom was one who always wanted to get into the presents early. So, my family created a tradition of opening a small gift each night for the week leading up to Christmas. This practice was supposed to help appease the anticipation of what the big gifts were under the tree.
That week Mom and I would get “antsy” as my Grandmother used to say. We would get excited about giving and receiving little happies and often beg Dad to let us open our evening gift early in the day. I can still recall him saying, “Good things come to those who wait.”
That psychology didn’t work well for a kid at Christmas. However, I have found as an adult I must often remind myself that good things do in fact come to those who wait. Some of the greatest blessings of life occur as a result of waiting.
It wasn’t until more than a decade ago when my life was utterly transformed by a relationship with Jesus Christ that I realized the saying “patience is a virtue” is so very accurate. It is a Fruit of the Spirit. God calls us to be patient. That means that we are to learn to wait well.
There is nothing wrong with being excited and filled with anticipation of what is ahead. But we must learn that often, the best things in life take time to arrive. All of these memories came flooding back tonight as I read our passage for Day 7 of “Unwrap the Joy.” God made a covenant with David so very long ago.
“Look, the days are coming” – this is the Lord’s declaration – “when I will fulfill the good promise that I have spoken concerning the house of Israel and the house of Judah.” Jeremiah 33:14 (CSB)
God made a promise to David, but also to each one of us, His children. He assured us in verse 15 that he would cause a “Righteous Branch to sprout up.” That Branch would be Jesus Christ. He would be the only Son of God who would come forth to deliver justice and righteousness to all of the world. He would be Savior. We would all sit under His rule but…we would have first to wait.
Hundreds of years passed before the Savior of the World would be born in that manger in Bethlehem. The world had to wait for God’s promise to be fulfilled. That waiting would change the world. That waiting would be a time where God would prepare His people for the Messiah He had promised. And that waiting would fulfill many prophecies and covenants God provided the people.
Praise the Lord for what came to those of us who waited, trusting in His declarations. Jesus Christ came into this world to save us all! Talk about good! How about marvelous and matchless? Somebody shout Amen! Just as God foretold us, Jesus would be the Perfect Lamb. More than 2,000 years ago Jesus died on Calvary as the Perfect Sacrifice for you and me. And just as God promised, Jesus rose from the grave three days later! God could have raised Jesus immediately, but He caused the world to wait. Three days later that stone was rolled away. Three days later Jesus walked out of that borrowed tomb. Three days later, He rose again!
Today, as we anticipate celebrating Christmas, we are once again waiting. Yes, many are waiting for gatherings with family and friends. Waiting for meals and gifts and hugs from those we love. But we, as children of God, are also waiting for a promise to be fulfilled. God promised us that Jesus Christ would one day return to earth and collect all of God’s children. One day Jesus is coming back! Are you waiting for His return with a mighty expectant anticipation? Are you prepared to be witness to and participate in the return of Jesus?
God’s promises never return void. Everything He has ever promised has come true. Dear One, Jesus is coming back one day. So until then, just remember that good things come to those who wait. Praise Jesus for being the best good thing ever!