Most of us have heard scripture verses about waiting on the Lord…
“but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.”
But, if we were honest with ourselves, most of us would say we do not enjoy waiting. The inconvenience of sitting for long periods of time at a red light or standing behind a person at our favorite fast food joint who can’t decide on what to order can be like nails on a chalkboard. We want the world to move at our pace!
What happens when the waiting not only slows our pace but causes the path that we were taking to take a drastic trajectory change that impacts our lives forever? In walks a young man named Simon. He and his family lived in a distant village on the outskirts of Kenya. He said, growing up in the village, he remembered how hard his father worked to provide food for his family. His mother had died a couple years earlier from the flu and his role as the only son was to take care of the responsibilities of the house while his father worked.
“It was a hard life, but a good life as I loved my father very much,” he said timidly as he shared stories of how he and his father would do everything together.
One morning, Simon recalled his father not getting out of bed as quickly for his work. “I knew that he was not feeling well, but I was not ready for what was about to happen.” For the next three days, Simon said his father laid in bed unable to get up for even the smallest task. The village “doctor” came to the home and confirmed that Simon’s father was very ill and only time would tell about his recovery.
“I remember praying that the Lord would heal my father. I would lay on the dirt floor by his bed praying and waiting for him to rise up and us go on a walk together as we had done so many times before. The waiting was very hard.”
The story does not end with Simon getting to walk with his earthly father again. His father died a few weeks later from his illness. Simon was then taken to live in his Uncle’s home in Nairobi.
“I can say I was mad at God. I waited on Him to make my father better and I felt like He did not hear me.”
Later, Simon found himself rummaging through “The Dump Site” (a place where all the trash is dumped from the city and surrounding slums) to find scrap metal to sell for money to buy glue to sniff.
“The glue was the only thing that would help me not remember the hurt I was feeling.”
You may be asking what this story has to do with waiting. That question would be good if it were the end of the story. Simon did not know it yet, but the walk he wanted to take earlier with his earthly father was going to be with his Heavenly Father.
“I was at the dump site one day and saw a group of kids my age playing and having fun and I wanted to be with them.” Simon later said that one of the Chaplain’s from No Hungry Children invited him to come and join them. “They taught me about the Bible and fed me food. I knew this is where I wanted to be. I could not go back to The Dump Site ”
Simon asked God to rescue his father from sickness but did not realize God was going to rescue him by taking his father. The waiting for Simon was not over and it took him having to move to a new city to be able to receive an education and learn about a Father that would satisfy him eternally. Simon shared the story of how God gave him a new heart and a new chance at life.