Most of us have a hard time waiting for anything, particularly if it involves something truly difficult. But we are all waiting: in traffic, at the doctor’s office, for a response to an email, for a package to arrive. Sometimes the wait is for a reality that is life changing, or even life threatening, if it involves the state of our health. How do we wait?
Jesus is asking this question in the gospel and tells a parable about a servant who becomes selfish and self absorbed as he waits for the return of his master. In our waiting, we can become impatient and demanding, losing our focus and sense of priority. Jesus is urging us to reflect on how we are waiting for God to enter our lives, and to see how He enters in surprising and unexpected ways. God has the most remarkable way of being present: in the ordinary encounters of life. We keep missing them because we expect something extraordinary, or we don’t expect God to make His presence known in the “mundane” realities of life. We transform the beauty of ordinary life into the “mundane,” which is nothing more than lifeless!!! And then we become restless, looking over our heads and hearts for excitement in new relationships, new jobs, new friends…all well and done, if we are being led into these encounters and not grabbing to get them. We need to be led by God, who will show us the way, ever so gradually. God isn’t too partial to those who are always “grabbing” to get what they want, like the wicked servant in the parable.
People are restlessly moving from relationship to relationship, from job to job in an endless search for the new or the novel. Once the newness wears off…so are we…off and running on the surface of life. We never enter the “deep waters,” which demand risk and patience. We stay on the shore where we are in control and comfortable and we where are waiting for nothing but self gratification, which must be instant. Just think, in the near future, drones from Amazon will be “dropping” your orders the very same day they are ordered!!! Instant delivery!! And the restlessness deepens…
Jesus is teaching us to wait, not for “something” to happen but for SOMEONE to happen. Let us wait for God to come into our lives in surprising ways or ways we don’t expect: in the ordinary, day to day living of life!!! But it’s always on God’s terms and not our own. Jesus wants us to be good stewards of time and how we “spend” our time: waiting. God is waiting for you to live in the present, to stop running and become aware that the One you are waiting for is right before your eyes.
Buen camino. Fr. Frank