It tends to gnaw at the soul...the slow drip drip drip of time.
But mostly on most days of most weeks of my life I have to wait for something.
It is the nature of this life.
We wait for stop lights and dinner and children putting on their shoes.
We wait for letters to arrive and teapots to boil and friends to come over so we can laugh.
And we wait for the things that live deep in us like peace and justice and grace.
It seems we have a choice in the waiting. We can hope. Or we can despair.
The despair comes easier for me. It really does.
I can do melancholy right up there with Sylvia Plath.
I told my sister, Jenny, the other day,
"I've been to some dark places in my mind. I'm not going to lie."
But unfortunately, being desperate and depressed tends to wear one down.
So while it is easiest to isolate myself and cry into my pillow
and shake a fist or two at the ceiling, I hardly ever feel better afterwards.
It seems turning inward closes off the door to hope.
And hope is what gives our souls room to breathe.
When we are waiting...when we feel crushed and helpless and at the mercy of all the craziness of this world we need someone...anyone...to offer us a small slice of hope,
that we can ruminate on...dwell on...that will lift our head up off of the soggy pillow, as it were, to look toward what could be instead of what is at present.
David said, "I lift up my eyes to the hills - where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord, Maker of heaven and earth." (Psalm 121:1-2)
It's a prayer to bring our heads up...even in the waiting...in the darkness of the moment....
the bleakness of our today... to see the hope of the tomorrows aways off in the distance and to keep our eyes peeled for the one who breathes those tomorrows into existence.
So today, in the midst of waiting, I am grateful for hope.
"Hope is that thing with feathers that perches in the soul and sings the tune without the words and never stops... at all." Emily Dickinson