I’ve noticed a theme while talking to several friends and family members lately. A theme of desires. Many of us yearn to work on the right path in the right place.
This applies to students or employees, who, week after week slave away to obtain that ideal position within a classroom or company. This applies to the underprivileged, couples who want children, those suffering health setbacks or relationship plateaus, to missionaries. This applies to artists and writers who want more than anything to find the perfect homes for their works and stories. The point is, all of us are striving for that ideal scenario where we get to be THAT person in THAT position, but in the meantime, we wait.
I handle waiting well about
91% 79% of the time. I keep busy by working out, studying the scriptures, reading, writing, taking care of my family, cleaning my house, cooking, serving in my church–until BOOM!–something upsets my equilibrium, usually for no practical reason, and I go crazy.
That’s when the thoughts come: “I will only be successful if…” “I, more than anyone, deserve this…” “I’ve waited long enough.” “God, are you listening to me?”
Last night I was blessed to listen to a spectacular talk on faith. It was what I needed to keep my chin up and keep swimming. Still, though, I sought more answers at church. “How can I feel stronger?” I wondered. “What else can I learn today?”
That’s when I realized while singing the sacrament hymn that our Savior was waiting for something, and it was not something happy or easy. He was born to die. He knew that dying for us was his mission. Did he decide that everything leading up to that point didn’t matter? Did he run up to the Roman guard a decade earlier when waiting got hard and demand, “Take me now, boys!”
He healed people until the time came. He taught, fed thousands, showed leadership qualities. I wonder if some days he simply wanted to finish what he was born to do, but he knew the end wasn’t the only part that mattered. The middle is where he taught us how to treat people, how to give our will to Christ. He fasted and prayed ALL THE TIME, served people, and taught constantly. He didn’t ever get the perfect house, perfect clothes, or perfect mode of transportation. Instead he visited temples, got baptized, washed people’s feet. Cried with people who suffered. Stood up against bullies. He was willing to be unpopular with the current political and religious regime.
So this is my takeaway. We’re all reaching for goals. We all want to meet success, but our Savior, once again, taught us through his masterful example that we can be great while we wait.