Hospital Waiting Room
There is something holy and awesome about a hospital waiting room. It’s holy because somehow, in the stress of waiting and wondering if a loved one will be healed behind closed doors where you cannot go, God seems very near. It is awesome because real life is going on before your eyes. You and those around you are being confronted with something they cannot control or fix, and which may result in frightening consequences or real joy. How rare for the average American to be suspended so far out of our depth!
I have been waiting today to find out if my daughter has cancer, or other serious complications from a watermelon-sized ovarian cyst that grew in her abdomen over the last few months. The diagnosis last week was frightening. Surgery! Possibly cancerous! Oh, God!
The waiting room today is peaceful, sunlit, and… as I said… awesome. I am so aware that I am helpless. I am so GLAD that God is here with us. The doctrines of our faith–His sovereignty, so strong and unassailable, His love, stronger than death, His promises, so sure, and His gift of hope through His Son who was not spared for our sakes–these are anchors that hold steady through the storms of life.
Hospital waiting rooms make it clear that a trial is at hand. I think that one reason that I don’t respond well to smaller trials is that I don’t recognize them as such. The spilled milk again, the phone call that my husband will be home late, or the loud noise of two quarreling children are trials, too. But, somehow, I think I can handle them. I don’t tend to turn to Father and ask for help readily. In the hospital waiting room, there’s very little else to do. I’ve done all I can, and having done all, the only thing left to do is to stand.
But, what if I took that truth to the smaller, everyday trials? What if I looked at the normal, everyday inconveniences of life and asked Father to help me be like His Son in response? What if I knew, daily, my desperate dependence on His grace to do every little thing? What if my efforts–sin riddled and pitiful though they might be–were all that I could do, and so I rested more in the carrying grace of God as a result? I’m convicted. I need to remember Father more in the daily, and not just in the hospital waiting room. But, for all of that, I’m glad I’m here and that He’s here with me.