by DanWolgemuth on September 11, 2009

Most of us have been a witness to a gifted athlete savoring a significant accomplishment with a protracted pause. A baseball player whose position remains fixed at home plate after he clobbers a significant home run. A young tennis player who stands on the baseline after hitting the match-winning top spin passing shot. The wide receiver who makes a stellar catch in the end zone and stands for a moment to relish the accomplishment.

Significant moments invite us to linger; to listen to the crowd; to cherish the spotlight.

Lingering squeezes every last drop out of the experience. It refuses to move on, without first staying put… for the moment. Yes, every wonderful, celebratory, victorious, heroic milestone demands a linger.

But what if the intent of God is for us to do the same lingering when the crowd is silent; when the score isn’t in our favor; when somebody else is the hero; when we have more pain than joy; more questions than answers? Is it possible that one of the most significant marks of a follower of Christ is that they have learned not to race through the problems… but to linger there as well… in the chaos, in the suffering, in the battle… because it is there, perhaps especially there, that God meets us.

Is it possible to reject the notion that, “When the going gets tough, the tough get going!” What if we linger when the going gets tough? Not paralyzed, but reflective. Not frozen, but thoughtful. Not hopeless, but expectant. Not defeated, but humble.

Standing, waiting, extracting… the nectar that resides in the deepest part of pain and uncertainty; because we lingered. In the moment. With the moment.

“Come to me…” – this precious invitation of Jesus is designed for those with courage enough to linger… not on the podium of a champion, but on the battlefield of the warrior.

Linger… God is there.

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