Today’s Reading: 2 Peter 3:3-14
“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Inigo Montoya put it best in The Princess Bride when he said, “I hate waiting.” Waiting is torture, waiting is terrible. Even worse than waiting are those that make people wait. Dinner is ready, but one guest has yet to show up. Everyone is ready to walk out the door, but someone is still getting dressed. In each of these cases, anger and frustration are directed at those causing us to wait. They are the problem, they are rude, and they are only concerned with themselves.
What if God is the one you are waiting for? Jesus promises in the gospels that He is coming back, in Revelation he even says that He is coming soon. Yet here the Church sits two thousand-plus years later still waiting. Peter even warns us that this waiting will cause scoffers to question all the promises of God. Can God really be for you? Is He making you wait like this? Does a God who never shows up even exist? Should the fact that Jesus has not returned yet cause you to question your faith?
Is God being rude? Is he punishing you with this seemingly endless waiting or is something else going on? Waiting on God is not like waiting for a guest to arrive or for someone to get ready. What some people think is a delay in the return of Christ is actually part of God’s mercy. God does not wish that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. In other words, Jesus has not come back in part because He was waiting on you to be part of His people. In addition, He is waiting for all the others who will be part of the uncountable multitude that is the Church. This waiting is not an individual activity, it is a group activity. You don’t wait on God so much as we, the Church, wait on God. While we wait God will continue to serve His gifts and His people will continue to serve their neighbors.
At some point, the waiting will be over and we will all dwell in the new heavens and new earth where there will be all righteousness and no waiting. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
A thousand ages in Thy sight Are like an evening gone, Short as the watch that ends the night Before the rising sun. (O God, Our Help in Ages Past LSB 733, st 4)
-Pastor Grant Knepper is the pastor at Zion Lutheran Church, Hillsboro, Oregon.
Audio Reflections Speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch
Study Christ’s words on the cross to see how you can show more Christlike grace in your life. Perfect for group or individual study, each chapter has a Q&A at the end, and the back of the book includes a leader guide. Available now from Concordia Publishing House.