Prime Time Expectations… Hello weekend readers—are you still full-up with Thanksgiving goodies? How blessed we are with God’s abundance indeed. And that abundance is what has me musing on how easily I get hooked on tracking notifications—you know, FedEx, Amazon, UPS, USPS—at least I stay away from Black Friday-ugh!

Let’s face it, we Americans love our stuff and we love it even more if it is right on time. Our expectations are at such high levels that, if that package is delayed, it’s like the sun won’t shine that day! I admit that I have been an Amazon Prime customer since 2005. Living rurally, the cost of gas, and yes—the convenience—is my reason, along with good prices. In the pandemic, it was the only way to get product, and even now with the supply chain lagging, the ongoing auto strike, etc., getting needed products can be frustrating. Of course, the question is: “is this a need or a want?” Well, let’s tackle that another day!

When I am expecting an Amazon delivery here in Arizona, I must admit I check outside often, like a little kid waiting for Santa Claus to bring my presents. I want to scoop up that item and use it right away. When in New Mexico, it doesn’t get to us so quickly, and only through UPS so my expectations of arrival drive me crazy. When I think about this, it seems quite silly, if not embarrassing. At 69 years old I am the little kid demanding that Santa Claus get his sleigh here for my stuff…waiting is not an option!

Yesterday I had 3 deliveries. I’ve been under the weather with cough, etc., but did that deter me from going out there as soon as Amazon’s “text” came in that my package was delivered? Nope. This 69-year-old woman became the 6″-year-old-child running to their goodies. And let’s not even talk about when the text says: “There’s a delay with your delivery!” That happened the other day and I was going to call them and demand ‘why’ but that is when the Holy Spirit invaded my thoughts—when she does this, I listen—and I didn’t call. In fact, I felt silly and completely childish.

This ‘can’t-wait-for-stuff-urgency’ brought me to a Scripture the Apostle Paul wrote to the church in Rome (Romans 8:23-25). The NIV’s new Easy-to-Read translation puts it this way: “Not only the world, but we also have been waiting with pain inside us. We have the Spirit as the first part of God’s promise. So we are waiting for God to finish making us his own children. I mean we are waiting for our bodies to be made free. We were saved to have this hope. If we can see what we are waiting for, that is not really hope. People don’t hope for something they already have. But we are hoping for something we don’t have yet, and we are waiting for it patiently.”

Yikes, did this convict me on the spot! Here I am checking the front porch for a package and not thinking one bit about how I should be vigilant in watching and waiting for Jesus’ return. My package pales in His gift of life for me! I have my eyes keen on what I want with earthly stuff, and have forgotten what God is going to give me which no Prime, FedEx, UPS or USPS can give me: eternal life with my Lord in heaven! How important is that expectation for us? Like the church in Rome—it is everything. It is the core of hope that keeps us going.

As we finish the Thanksgiving holiday, we turn our thoughts to Christmas. How often do we have expectations that are never fulfilled? We hope for that new gift we must have, thinking it will be just what we need and instead we get something else…hopes dashed again. Yet look at that Scripture one more time—who hopes for something we already know about—like what is in that Amazon package, and that isn’t real hope at all.

What we need to be doing is have a constant readiness for Jesus. That doesn’t mean we sit all day and watch for the Archangel Michael to sound the trumpet, but it does mean how we prioritize our problem with needs and wants. What, if this Christmas, is the day Jesus takes us home? Wouldn’t that be the best “package delivery” ever? And I can tell you this, on that day I won’t get a tracking notification, but that day will truly be my Prime Delivery! AMEN.