Editor’s note: Katie Rotterman, a DC Service Corps alumni, reflects on her relationship with God through the word “await”.

Each year I struggle with the positive spin Advent puts on waiting. I see devotionals about joy-filled waiting, the wonder in the waiting, the anticipation found in waiting. 

I don’t want to wait – I want to do. 

This year though, I think I get waiting a little more. 

Waiting for Christ is not passive – when Christ asks us to wait for him it is not (as I had long pictured) like the receptionist at my doctor’s office asking me to wait. It is not like waiting for water to boil or bread to rise or the bus to come. 

Waiting for Christ is like waiting for the arrival of a loved one after a long separation. It is an active waiting, where we prepare our hearts and our homes to receive those we care about, make plans, cook food. It is a waiting that ends with a warm hug of welcome after a long day of travel and an excitement that makes me stumble over my words. 

It is also a waiting that is shared – just as we await the birth of Christ each Advent, so does Christ await our return to him.  

Pope Francis, in an audience last year, said, “We Christians are called to safeguard and spread the joy of waiting: we await God who loves us infinitely and at the same time we are awaited by Him.”

How crazy, and radical, and beautiful is that? To know that God waits for me, looks for me, hopes for me, longs for me. 

He longs for me in the Eucharist, waits for me in prayer, longs to encounter me each day through the people I meet – just as I long to see him. 

Christ awaits me this Advent season. Christ awaits you. 

Where is he waiting for you?