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As kids, we could hardly wait for Christmas, our next birthday, or summer break. We were excited about what was to come and we were filled with an eager anticipation, even though we had to wait all the same. And there’s wisdom here for the rest of life as well.

Anticipation is sitting in the tension of hope and longing – we don’t yet have what we desire, but we’re looking forward to it. And, on the one hand, this forces us to keep our hearts open and not become distracted or otherwise settle for anything less than God’s best.

In fact, our desire and ability to appreciate what’s to come also grows in this waiting. We wait for those things that matter, are special, and have great value. And we miss out – settling only for shallow pleasures when we don’t learn how to wait with great expectations.

And, of course, the waiting also gives us an opportunity to grow in patience. There’s much wisdom in learning not to rush life and enjoy each day we’ve been given. This helps us to develop a bifocal view of life – learning not to miss today even while we’re still longing for tomorrow.

To be sure, there’s not much we have to wait for in our modern society. And we generally expect instant gratification of our desires – doing our best to dismiss, ignore, or replace those that cannot be immediately fulfilled.

But, in these last days, as we once again prepare our hearts for the advent of Christ, we must learn again how to wait with anticipation. We don’t want to grow dull and impatient, leaving us to merely settle for the shallow things of this world. Like we did for Christmas morning as kids, we must recover our ability to wait patiently, though with an eager anticipation for Christ’s return. 

In the end, allow your heart to grow in anticipation as you wait for Christ to come again. This is how we wait in hope – not losing heart as we look forward to God restoring all good things.

Photo by Jeswin Thomas on Unsplash

Dr. Corey Carlisle

Licensed marriage and family therapist and certified sex therapist - providing Christian counseling and soul care to individuals and couples, with a special emphasis on developing the masculine soul. Suwanee, GA 30024

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