The last time I updated on my mom’s condition was about 4 months ago. As many people are praying for her, it would be good to give another update here. My mom is now moved to a new hospital called Baycrest, which turned out to be far better than the previous one. She is now in a bigger room with a big window (She had no access to a window before), and a great long-term care facility if my mom requires it later.
But when we visited her last time, we felt she had regressed a bit as she was less expressive and mobile. Soon after I heard a report that she got better, but I could not help but to wonder when will God’s promise be fulfilled, which is a complete healing. One part of me is deeply thankful to God for the progress, but the other part of me keeps wondering when.
But this is where scripture calibrates my expectation and guides my thinking. After receiving a specific promise from God, Abraham waited 25 years (Gen 21:1-2), Isaac 20 years (Gen 25:21), and Jacob 20 years (Gen 35:6) until they saw the promise fulfilled. And there are myriads of other characters in the Bible who had to wait for a long time.
It is clear that the Bible teaches one painful but real nature of growth: There is a kind of maturity that can never come without waiting. We can mature without waiting in many ways, but there is a certain kind of maturity that cannot happen without waiting. Because more than 1/3 of the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-23) requires a period of long waiting to be evident. It shows that what is more important than God’s promise being fulfilled is us growing in endurance, and patience, becoming more like Christ. (Heb 12:2)
The biggest temptation while waiting is becoming too desperate and making desperate measures, which can ruin the waiting period. If Abraham did, we can do the same. We are to wait in eager expectation without being too desperate. Because if God promised it, our desperation does not add anything to the fulfillment of his promise. But it can subtract from the patience we need to experience the joy of growing while waiting.