I am sure that God keeps no one waiting unless He sees that it is good for him to wait… but you must regard it as waiting, not as camping. You must keep on praying for light.
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
This quote from Mere Christianity describes the process of finding a church family after becoming a Christian, but I definitely think it can apply to waiting in other senses, too. One thing I’ve learned about college is that the whole thing can honestly be described as waiting. Waiting for the semester to be over. Waiting for spring break. Waiting for summer. Waiting to graduate. Waiting to get a job. Waiting to move out of the dorm and into an apartment. Waiting for your #ringbyspring. Waiting for whatever is next.
This quote struck me as convicting and inspiring, all at once. The first half: “I am sure that God keeps no one waiting unless He sees that it is good for him to wait.” There’s always a reason for not-yet‘s. God has so much goodness for me here and now if I’ll just look up to Him instead of constantly looking ahead. I can get excited about what’s next while also passionately staying rooted in the present. I don’t want to miss what He has for me today. I trust the process He’s got me in and the end results of it. I trust His goodness not only at the end of my waiting, but in the middle of it, too.
The second half: “You must regard it as waiting, not camping. You must keep on praying for light.” To me, this means continuing to move forward and make progress. Ultimately, what are we waiting for most? Heaven. We can’t forget that this world is only temporary. We must have an eternal mindset and heavenly focus. That’s the difference between waiting and camping: While we wait, we keep going. We don’t sit idly. We let God work in and through us to bring heaven to earth, instead of resigning ourselves to laziness and the idea that we’re simply stuck in a broken world.
Camping is what most of us think of when we think of waiting, but C.S. Lewis presents a different idea: active waiting. Like active listening, it starts with attitude. We don’t sit around. We try. We keep on praying for light. We expect God to move and work. We’re patient with His timing. We trust that He has our best interest. We have faith in His ways. We put our hope in Him. We seek Him here and now. We find joy in each moment He has given us today. It’s a balance of patiently looking forward and digging into the present.
The external outcome is the same after any type of listening and waiting. You’ve listened, and you’ve waited. But waiting well matters so much internally. It reflects faith. I want to be the kind of girl whose faith leads her to wait well, knowing God will not disappoint in the future and God will work miracles in the present.
To my companions in the waiting, whatever you’re waiting for: You are not alone, and this time is not without purpose. Don’t camp out. Why don’t we wait well, together?
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:18