"Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers." - VoltairE

Good things come to those who wait (for bears and God)

Posted by Anne Witton on Wednesday, June 7, 2023 Under: Reflections

On a recent trip to Slovenia, my friend and I booked to go with a nature expert to try and see a wild brown bear. We drove out into the forest, hiked to the wildlife hide, climbed the ladder and took up our positions on the wooden bench, binoculars at the ready, to watch and wait.

After the third hour sitting silently and patiently in the hide, I was getting a bit restless. Despite being on high alert, the only wildlife we’d seen was a shrew. I was starting to wonder whether we should have just gone to a zoo where you can wander round with an ice cream in one hand and a smartphone in the other casually snapping pics of captive animals that have been presented for your pleasure.

But instead we were sitting silently in an uncomfortable wildlife hide for hours, being attentive and patient with no guarantee that we would see anything. Yet, even if no bear materialised, I knew that it was out there and would be more authentic and majestic than anything in a cage. Bears are wild. They don’t run to our agenda. We don’t control their feeding times and have mastery over their power. And this got me thinking about God.

God is a wild and untamed God. Sometimes he won’t appear when we expect him to or demand his presence. He doesn’t run to our schedules or slot easily into our plans. We can’t keep him caged so that we can gawp at him when it suits us. If we want to encounter the glorious, living God then we often have to wait patiently. But when he does appear, it’s the most glorious thing. The discomfort of the wait is forgotten and we are stunned by God’s majesty, power and presence.

The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him,
    to the one who seeks him;
    it is good to wait quietly
    for the salvation of the LORD.

Lamentations 3: 25-26 (NIV)

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.

Isaiah 40: 31 (ESV)

You might be wondering if we ever did actually see a bear. We drew a blank the first night, but went back the next day, spent a further three hours watching and waiting and then a magnificent male brown bear appeared and walked right in front of the hide before running off into the forest. Was it worth the wait? Absolutely!

In : Reflections 

Tags: bear "waiting for god" patience waiting 


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