I waited for 2 hours in the hot Florida sun in a line that saw no shadows from trees. I waited there because it was the line to see Rapunzel and Flynn Rider, from the Disney movie Tangled. No it wasn't for me. And I wasn't alone. Sweaty dads filled a line that went nowhere really fast. I waited for my daughters, whose trip was made complete by meeting Rapunzel and Flynn.
While I waited, my wife took the kids on a couple of rides. They joined me in time to smile for photos and talk with this newest Disney princess and her prince. Jerica, my 4-year old, ask Flynn to put the smolder on.
This begs the question, was it worth it? Was my patient suffering in affliction worth the prize at the end? Perhaps I'm being over dramatic, but my answer is yes. It was worth it. Dads have gone through much more for their children. But while I sat there waiting, I did ponder.
After all, people will wait like that at Disney (for rides as well as character greetings), for good seats at a concert, for sales on Black Friday, or even to purchase movie tickets. We share stories of incredible dedication that people have for different things. But have you ever seen this in church?
When was the last time people lined up the night before to make sure they got a good seat at church? How often have you counted the days before a church potluck? Have you ever highly anticipated the pastor's sermon? We could take this one step further...
How long did people wait to see Jesus? Did they allow discomfort to discourage them? Did they give up after it seemed too long? Just like our stars of today, they had heard stories of miracles and great teaching about Jesus. But was there a breaking point for most people? I like to consider the people who were not there for healing. What about those people that just wanted a glimpse? How long were they willing to wait?
How long are we willing to wait for Jesus? Are we patient in suffering? Are we enduring scorn and shame for His sake? There were several people that found out what we dads were waiting for at Disney, rolled their eyes and moved along.
We draw near to things we are passionate about.
Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. ~Hebrews 10:22
*I have shared this story on my blog before. I recently shared these thoughts with my youth group.