Day 1 of our Haiti Mission Trip is winding down, and here we are making our home in the luggage claim area of the Ft. Lauderdale International Airport. We’re playing the waiting game.
That seem to sum up the whole day, really. We arrived, as recommended, 3 hours early for our international flight from Sioux Falls, SD, only to have to wait to even check in for our first flight.
The first was a great flight, and it was a first in several ways. For Zach and Caleb, it was their first flight ever. For the rest of us, it was the first of several flights for our round trip journey to and from Haiti. On top of that, we also landed in Chicago 30 minutes earlier than expected, so that was an added bonus.
Except… it meant more waiting. We waited in the Chicago. O’Hare airport for about 4 hours, which really isn’t a terrible wait – unless you’re flying with very active teenage boys. It’s so hard to be patient.
Our flight to Florida was another smooth and unremarkable flight – the best kind in my opinion. The downside (and I’m really not looking for the dark cloud behind the silver lining) is that now we wait, again, for our next flight. Ft. Lauderdale doesn’t have an “International Section,” and the entire terminal has to be cleared at night for security screening. So our waiting tonight will be with the other overnight travelers in the baggage claim section of the airport. We can check back in at 4:00 in the morning; which is only 4 hours away. So, yea!, more waiting.
I don’t think I’m really good at waiting. I can’t blame the boys for being impatient – I’m really no better. I like to see results, I like to get where I’m going; I like to be on the move. Waiting takes patience, trust, and faith.
And so we wait.
I’ve been thinking quite a bit lately about the description of the Godly Man in Palm 1:
He is like a tree planted by stream of water that yeilds its fruit in its season…
Tree take time. They don’t grow overnight, and what grow does come is measured in decades not just years. It takes time for the fruitful season to come – and growing from seedling to fruit bearing might seem an eternity.
But the Godly man is like this tree planted by the streams of water. I could talk here about this being the action of God – the tree doesn’t plant itself. I could show how the permanence of being planted by streams of water is a contrast to the life ever-digressing life of the wicked. But what strikes me tonight, as I wait, is the patience of the man of God.
What is it that Treebeard the Ent says to young Pippen and Merry, “Don’t be so hasty!”
And so we wait. We wait; expecting more travels and adventures tomorrow. We wait; praying that God has great things in store for us as we serve Him and His people this coming week. We wait; realizing that none of us are really going to get a good night’s rest, but also remembering that 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.”