For in this hope we were saved. But hope which is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he already sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait eagerly for it with patience and composure.
For as long as I can remember, I have disliked surprises when I know they are coming. If someone surprises me with a gift at a moment’s notice, that is great. However, if someone tells me today that I will be receiving something in a month or a week or even a day, I just cannot handle it. When I must wait for surprises such as these, it is likely to be quite a grumpy time. Of course there is joy and appreciation at receiving something, but it kills me to not know what it will be and to not be in control of when I receive it. This is not the way that God would like us to await the promises He has waiting for us. Does He want us to be joyful? Yes. Does He want us to be appreciative? Yes. Does He want us to sulk because it is out of our hands? No. What God desires is that we wait on him in a controlled and mature manner.
If we want to be completely honest, this is the difference between waiting as an adult waits and waiting as a child waits. Physically and spiritually we should be growing and maturing over time. As we learn about the promises of God that have been spoken over us but not yet fulfilled, we should feel eagerness and anticipation building up within us. We should be excited and appreciative. If we lose sleep over the future fulfillment of God’s promises, over the hope that we have in him, it should be due to our excitement and not our impatience. Someone like myself must learn to love surprises because what God has waiting for us will certainly surpass our expectations. The waiting required of us when we hope in God should not produce negative feelings but should produce that which continues to build us. Patience and composure are not here to dampen our spirits as we wait but to make us wait with the right attitude.
Scripture describes many things that await those who put their hope in the one true God. The thing is, what is described in scripture is still confined to the limits of our human imagination and comprehension. When we read the visions described in the Revelation of Jesus Christ, we can see things only so clearly. When we read about the New Jerusalem in which we will reside, we can envision only so much. We are just far too limited right now to even try to grasp accurately what lies ahead for us. The unknown nature of what is to come should not disappoint us but should cause us to be overjoyed. The one who made the universe and holds it in his hands has something unimaginable ahead for us if we just wait eagerly but patiently. Father, thank You for giving us hope in your future wonders that we cannot even imagine.