by: Sr. Joy A. De Vera, RA
“Sister, I am looking forward on your faithcrumbs reflection!” I received this message from a friend. I was surprised to know that someone out there is waiting for my reflection. It’s been a month since my last article was posted.
Most of us, if not all, experienced waiting for something or someone.
Waiting for a phone call.
Waiting in a line.
Waiting for transportation.
Waiting for a scheduled interview.
Waiting to hear someone’s “yes” from a proposal.
Waiting to be accepted in a work application.
Waiting for a good internet connection.
Waiting for food ordered in a restaurant.
Waiting for your turn in a salon.
Waiting for the plant to grow.
Waiting for the tree to bear fruit.
Waiting for the harvest time.
Waiting for a day off.
Waiting for your payday.
For most of my singles friends out there, waiting for the right one.
And the list goes on and on and on…
There are lot of “waiting” activities that are happening around us.
I, too experienced waiting, and it gives me a lot of joy when what I am waiting for comes. There are times when I find it annoying to wait. There are moments when I feel like waiting is a waste of time.
I also experience being “waited” for. Sometimes, it made me feel special. But at times, I feel guilty, because it shows a lack of respect for the other’s person time.
From continuous musing, this pandemic is a season of “waiting”. There are many moments when “waiting” preoccupies us.
Maybe we can reflect on these:
What is my heart’s disposition on waiting? Is there joy? Love? Peace? Excitement? Worries? Uncertainties? Sadness? Fears? Impatience? Anger? Hatred?
What is the “season of waiting” trying to teach you about yourself?
Or about the things that you believe in?
What are the virtues being introduced to you in this special period in the world’s history?
As I checked my heart disposition on “waiting” for the pandemic to end, I noticed a lot of interior movements happening in me. I, however, realized that when pandemic ends, we will not stop “waiting” for something or someone after all.
“Waiting” is constant.
“Waiting” is part of everyday reality.
“Waiting” is part of our life.
In the past months that I “waited” for the final lifting of lockdown and for the resumption of regular Eucharistic celebration, my longing to what I am waiting for deepens.
However, the danger in “waiting”, if not guarded securely by prayer or alertness, can be snatched away by the demon of idleness by too much laxity that can lead to carelessness.
On the other hand, “waiting” can be a perfect space for purification. The value of what you are “waiting” for becomes priceless. You become numb to look at the time consumed or to complain if it’s taking too long. It may be termed as “worth the wait!”
Pandemic re-echoes in my own experience the grace to “pray and wait.” These are powerful words of Fr. Henri Lacordaire, OP to our Mother Foundress – St. Marie Eugenie, when she was discerning on what to do in her life. St. Marie Eugenie is “waiting” for some answers to many of her life questions. She patiently waited for God’s perfect timing to answer her question through rigorous “prayer and waiting” periods. Until she received the call not just to become a consecrated religious sister but to start a Religious Congregation.
The gift of “waiting” taught me to pay attention to a lot of perfectly ordinary moments that are ever-present. It led me to spend most of my “waiting” time with “SOMEONE” in the interior part of me who is always waiting to be visited – my dear Jesus who patiently waits.
My “waiting” moments made me ponder on what is the situation of Jesus inside my heart. There were temptations, and the insistent imperfect past and worries about the pandemic situation clouded my heart. The image of the broken engine of a car that is being fixed by a mechanic in stillness and in silence helped me understand this thought: The car owner will simply wait until it will be fixed. In this period of “waiting,” God had enough time to fix some broken wires in me and to ensure that I am always heart-wired with Him. Our orderly rhythm and prayers in the convent helped me to accept the reality of the new norm. I was able to process and to deepen my understanding where my feelings and emotions were coming from.
“Waiting” is a full course that hones my self-mastery skills. It helps me to befriend my shadows. The art of “waiting” also helps me practice my virtue of patience – which rewards me interior peace.
To finally conclude, “waiting” for me is an advent experience in the midst of the pandemic. I learned that I can allow Jesus to be born in the manger of my heart in this extraordinary period. Jesus’ assuring voice in prayer consoles me as I hear Him in the depths of my being saying, “Joy, you are worth waiting for!”
He is always patient to wait. He never gets tired and annoyed. He is joyful to welcome me on my perfect availability when I can listen and commune with Him.
“Waiting” is never a time-wasting.
“Waiting” is a gift.
“Waiting” is a grace.
In this season where we are all “waiting” and hoping that this pandemic ends soon, I pray that we will always have the grace to seek God, to find Him, and to look for Him in the interior part of our being.
God is waiting for us there. We just have to open the ears of our heart and hear Him say:
“Come home, my dear. I am ready to listen to your stories. I am dwelling comfortably in your heart where I consider it as my home. I will wait for you because you are worth waiting for!”
I have waited for this moment(Excerpt from the song “I am ever with you” by Fr. Arnel Aquino, SJ)
To be with you again
In my heart you’ll remain
In your heart I’ll stay I am with you, till the end of your days
I am with you, have faith
That I hold you
Even when you let go
And I love you,
You must know I am here. I am ever with you.
Photo credit: Owned by the author taken at the vicinity of Loyola School of Theology.