While in high school, I took alot of photography art classes. Using an old Canon camera, I remember painstakingly lining up each shot I wanted to take–checking the angle, the light, the lens speed before clicking the button. As a cheap child, I only had 26 shots on a roll of film to capture before I would have to go purchase another roll. It then took one class period to develop the film, with the high potential of light exposure ruining the film. Then it took another couple of days in a dark room trying to perfect a single picture. This form of photography took discipline; it took money, time, effort and patience. And it was actually a fulfilling to go through all those steps.
“Therefore, beloved, while you are waiting for these things, strive to be found by him at peace, without spot or blemish; 15 and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation.” 2 Peter 3:14-15
But a few years ago, I purchased a digital Canon SLR. Now I can rapidly click off 500 pictures, scroll through the photos and delete them in a fraction of a second. I don’t have to wait for the perfect scene to develop, but blindly push the button hoping that one of the photos will get Ellie and three boys all smiling at the same time. And after the initial purchase, I haven’t had to buy more film. This form of photography is quick, easy, and cheap.
In our digital age, convenience has outpaced patience, and in doing so we have lost the spiritual discipline of waiting. We shoot first, analyze later. But there is something to be said that our spiritual journey is not a quick fix, but a long journey that takes discipline–and money, time, effort and patience. Now that is a counter-cultural way to live. It desires time consuming effort, rather than rapid solutions. Peter addresses this issue when he tells people to strive (work) as they wait upon Christ’s return.
What are you waiting on the Lord for right now? Are you pouring out your money, time, effort and patience on behalf of God?