According to,

Americans spend about 37 billion hours each year waiting in line.

This doesn’t count the hours we spend waiting in the doctor’s office

or any other kind of office where we’re at the mercy of someone else’s schedule.

This also doesn’t count the hours we spend stuck in traffic

or waiting for a movie to begin at a theater

or waiting for classmates to finish an assignment so our teacher can move on

or waiting for results of a medical test.

Waiting is as much a part of life as anything else we choose today.

But there’s the difference.

We usually don’t choose to wait.

Maybe that’s why it’s so hard.

We have no control while we’re waiting.

We can’t rush a line

or a doctor

or a line of cars in construction,

and we definitely can’t skip the previews in a theater clicking of a remote

or ask our teacher to move on to the next lesson just because we’re ready

or tell a pathologist to hurry.


There’s plenty of things,

from the time we’re very small,

that teach us the importance of having patience as we wait.

After all, no amount of frustration or sighing can change most situations in which we’re stuck.

That’s why it helps to carry a book to read

and learn to enjoy the sights and sounds around us as we travel down the road.

Part of a happy life is accepting the fact that we can’t escape the world of waiting.


Our spiritual journey is no different.

God, like any good parent, doesn’t jump every time we make a request,

frantically trying to meet our every need.

He knows character is built in seasons of waiting,

and He’s all about our character.

So, there will be times when we find ourselves in places we’d rather not be.


Times when we cry out,

wondering if God hears us.

David surely spent a lot of time crying out

as he ran from his own son

who wanted nothing more than to overthrow him as king.

And when he heard this very same son had been killed along the way,

Scripture says as he walked, he cried,

“My son Absalom! My son, my son Absalom!

If only I had died instead of you,

Absalom, my son, my son!”

David, a man after God’s own heart,

spent much of his life in a pit,

waiting for God to hear him.

But he learned something along the way I want to learn too.

Even from the pit,

God heard his cries.

And eventually, God turned his way.

Every single time.

Lifting him from the slime,

God set his feet back on a rock

and put a new song in his mouth,

a hymn of praise.

As the people watched this happen,

they put their trust in God too.


If I truly believe God hears me,

even from the pit,

I have to learn to wait patiently too.

He will turn my way.

He will lift me out.

He will put me on a rock.

He will give me a firm place to stand.

He will put a new song in my mouth.

In His time.

He is faithful.

Even while I’m waiting.

Life is going to be filled with seasons of waiting.

And the only part of waiting I can control,

whether I’m waiting for an important phone call

or sitting in a doctor’s office

or crying out from a slimy pit,

is how I act as I do.


I waited patiently for the Lord;
    he turned to me and heard my cry.

 He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
    out of the mud and mire;

he set my feet on a rock
    and gave me a firm place to stand.

He put a new song in my mouth,
    a hymn of praise to our God.

Many will see and fear the Lord
    and put their trust in him.

Psalm 40:1-3

(Today’s reading was from II Sam 16-18; Psalm 26; 40-41; 58; 61-62; and 64.)