Reflection by Craig Petty. Art by Chris de Hoog.
Creation is waiting in eager anticipation for the liberation of all things, when Jesus returns.
Figures in this painting appear facing a beautiful future, waiting eagerly for it to become a reality.
Waiting Eagerly Romans 8:23-25
By Craig Petty, Stairway Church
I've never liked waiting. I have a tendency to want to race through whatever is in front of me; tick the box, and move on. I remember waiting for our first child to be born. It seemed to take forever because I just wanted to be able to see and talk to her. The agony of waiting!
In some situations though, it's easy to see the benefits of waiting, and the blessing of a healthy child carried to full term is an example of that.
Our generation is caught in an in-between time. We have a promise of future hope where everything is restored, but right now we live with the reality of poverty and injustice. Romans 8 shows us that hope is birthed in exactly this sort of tension – because we can’t hope for something we already have (v24)!
Hope is enabling me to live in that tension, where I learn to “wait eagerly… wait patiently” (v23, 25). It causes me to be aware of the slightest indication of that hope being fulfilled; it offers me compassion and compels me to lean in expectantly – convinced that something is about to be restored!
Let’s allow hope to do its work this Lent, enabling us to be actively searching for where God is at work.
Father, I look to the future with hope.
I believe your promise that things are being restored and that one day that work will be complete.
Therefore, I come with a perspective of hope, and I’m on the lookout for your Spirit at work.
I’m ready to join in with what you’re doing and find the joy of playing my little part in it.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Craig Petty is the Lead Pastor at Stairway Church in Melbourne.
Chris de Hoog is an artist and graphic designer living and working in Geelong, Victoria. He is married to Amie and they have four children.