What am I waiting for? Psalm 130

Psalm 130:5-6

“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,

and in His Word I hope;

my soul waits for the Lord

more than watchmen for the morning,

more than watchman for the morning.”

Lent is all about the waiting.

But wasn’t Advent all about the waiting, too? In December we were waiting for the birth and for the arrival and for silent nights and peace and …

But in March…What am I really waiting for now?

I gave up sweets for Lent this year and if I’m completely honest, a whole lot of my thoughts and focus are spent waiting on Sunday morning to come (Ok… Maybe even midnight on Saturday night…) so that I can do what we “devout” Christians affectionately refer to as “feasting,” which we all really know is a glorified word for cheating, right?

We take our ashes on Wednesday and promise to deny ourselves and sacrifice…But my ashes have hardly rubbed off before my mind has wandered to what I am going to “feast” on come Sunday morning.

Where is the beauty from the ashes in that?

There is none.

Because nothing was ever really at stake with my half-hearted attempt at self-denial, was it?

So what…I can MOSTLY make it 6 days without sugar for 6 weeks out the year and what do I gain?

Nothing, really. And more importantly, how does that accomplish anything of worth for the kingdom?

Empty promises yield empty returns.

Does that mean that giving up sugar is a complete waste of time and energy and focus for me?

It doesn’t have to be.

Is God really honored by my lack of sugar indulgence or maybe I’m missing the entire point?

I am definitely missing the sweetness right now…but not the sweetness that comes from those empty calories.

I’m missing the sweetness of His Word in my heart.

I’m missing the sweetness of His mercy on my failures.

I’m missing the pure, living sweetness of His steadfast love and plentiful redemption. (Verse 7)

And I’m definitely missing the point.

If, through my somewhat trivial sugar-fasting, I allow the Lord to direct my focus and my cravings for sweetness toward HIM and the only true sweetness that really satisfies the cravings, then just maybe the trivial can become something else…Maybe the ashes of triviality can BEcome the beauty of something else entirely…Something truly sweet and fully satisfying and lasting far longer than that sugar high ever could. The beauty of a deeper, richer relationship with Him.

Empty promises yield empty returns.

But IF I’m waiting on the Lord and putting my hope in His Word, His promises are anything but empty. If my waiting on Him for peace, for direction, for purpose, for healing is truly focused on Him, He promises all these things and exponentially more…”a new thing” (Isaiah 43:19), “strength” (Nehemiah 8:10, Isaiah 40:31), “beauty instead of ashes” (Isaiah 61:3), and “joy in the morning” (Psalm 30:5)…

“My soul waits for the Lord

more than a watchman for the morning

more than a watchman for the morning.

O Israel, hope in the Lord!

For with the Lord there is steadfast love,

and with Him is plentiful redemption.” Psalm 130:6-7

Now THAT’S something worth waiting for!

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