Waiting and Waiting

Waiting and Waiting

by Sr. Sheila Campbell MMM          Ireland               29.04.2023

I am sitting waiting for something to start. Something I am responsible for, and I am nervous. I can’t concentrate on anything else and I invent small tasks to pass the time. Did I re-arrange the furniture in that office I used yesterday for an interview? Did I check if any mail came in today? Is there enough milk in the fridge for the staff?

You know how it is. Your mind goes racing to pass the time and suppress the panic.

For some reason today it made me think of our patients all over the world. The ones who are facing tests, awaiting test results, waiting for surgery, anticipating the birth of a child. I think for them also the time also goes incredibly slow. I wonder have I always been patient with my patients! One of the Sisters in the house is waiting for hip surgery. She has the date and is organising herself to be ready for it. But you can see the odd flicker of worry, even though she declares she is not afraid. Still, I assured her that the prayers of the rest of us would be behind her and carry her along.

I am thinking that Mary also must have been anxious waiting for the birth of Jesus. “How is this going to turn my life around?”, she must have been saying to herself – and not having an answer to her question. What mother does not go through anxious periods during her pregnancy. I can imagine the questions are endless. How will the birth be? Will the baby be all right? Will the father accept the child? How will I cope? Those of you who have been mothers can probably add a few more ponderings to this list.

And what about Jesus himself in the Garden of Gethsemane? Wasn’t that a terrible agony of waiting? Thinking about this I realise I have little to complain about.

Waiting only demands of us an openness to the future. It mirrors back to us our lack of control and that is what causes the panic, I think. So today, as I wait, I just want to reach out and take God’s hand. I am asking him to keep me company in my time of waiting.