Monday, May 21, 2012

Monday Morning Musings: Downtown Abbey and My Patience Muscle

I can't tell you how excited I was when I saw early last week that Channel 7 had stopped teasing us with "Downton Abbey - Coming Soon" statements.  Finally they were giving us an actual date! 

I don't know how many Aussie fans are left that haven't found an alternate means of watching Season 2, particularly since it appears the rest of the world saw it a million years ago.  I've seen many conversations about Downton Abbey on Facebook over the past several months and always had to look away - bursting with jealousy - in case of spoilers.  And let me tell you, more than once I did contemplate buying Season 2 on DVD, particularly since I saw it on sale several times.  But I managed to restrain myself.  I'd like to say it was purely because of my wonderfully mastered self control.  Though a lack of extraneous funds had something to do with it, I'm sure!

But it got me thinking - how many things do we wait for these days? In this cheap product, digital, easy access, "now" era it seems like we've lost the need and ability to wait.  We can't even sit still for a few moments without whipping out some digital device to keep us entertained.

As soon as Downton Abbey Season 1 finished airing last year, I was ready for the second season.  I reasoned and had accepted that I'd have to wait for this year.  Then the tennis came and went in January, and the station started flashing Downton Abbey ads and I thought, surely it would be on soon.  When it wasn't, I figured it might be on during the post Easter screening season.  That didn't happen either.  My anticipation - and frustration - had been building for so long, that when I finally saw that Downton Abbey was screening again on Sunday (last night), I was so ecstatic I almost did cartwheels.  Would I have sat down to watch season 2 with the same excitement and pleasure if I hadn't waited as long? I seriously doubt it.

The waiting principle works in books too, right? The more anticipation built, the more you have to wait - the more satisfying the outcome.  If the hero and the heroine don't have obstacles, struggles and a painfully long wait before their first kiss - would it be as sweet?

In Romans 15:5, Paul calls God the "God of patience".  James teaches us that the testing of our faith produces patience (James 1:3).  Patience is one of the fruits of the spirit.  Patience is obviously very important to God, and is something He wants us to have in bucket loads in our own lives.

Why does God want us to be patient? Is it so we can enjoy and appreciate things the way they were intended?

If we can't exercise patience in waiting for a favourite TV show, how much harder is it to wait for more important things in life? From waiting for a Godly spouse, waiting for a much wanted baby, waiting for deliverance from an illness - even waiting for a job, a house ... if everything is handed to us immediately, would we appreciate these things as much as we should? 

I am quite content to wait for a new episode of Downton Abbey each week, even though I know I could easily get the DVD and watch it all at once.  There are not many shows on TV worth watching these days and I enjoy having something to look forward to each week.  Plus I figure, waiting for "little" things like these is exercising my patience muscle.  

I'm trying to build up my patience with smaller things so that I have the staying power when I have to wait for bigger things.  At the moment I feel like there is a giant "WAIT" sign hanging over my life.  I've lost many significant things in recent times, and I'm waiting - sometimes patiently, sometimes impatiently - for a time when they might be restored, if God wills it.   

Do you have any things you need patience with right now?  If you want to share - specifically or not - I'm willing to pray for you :)
Imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises
Hebrews 6:12b (NKJV)


  1. I think I must be one of the few people world wide who cant see what the fuss is about Downton Abbey. In saying this I was one of those people who did love upstairs downstairs and I think this is very similar.
    But the same has been happening with Once Upon A Time, I have to not read posts cos it seems we are 2 series behind and have just started series one.
    But you are right about books while we dont want to wait we have to and we do. Waiting can sometimes be as rewarding as actually seeing or getting the product.

    1. Jenny, you're so right about "waiting can sometimes be as rewarding as actually seeing or getting the product." I've experienced this several times. I've had a couple of overseas trips I was planning - I had so much fun planning and all the anticipation and excitement. In the end I couldn't go, but I was okay with that!

      So what do you think of Once Upon A Time? I wasn't hooked after the first episode, but I'm intrigued enough to watch again tomorrow.

  2. I actually like OUAT, it seemed interesting and I think its one that will get better with each episode where we get to know it more. I think its one a movie length start would have helped.

    I think sometimes the wait is better too. like at Christmas how many times has the present under the tree really intrigued us but then when its opened its not what we want or its something we don't want (like the mugs when people know I don't drink tea or coffee, or the chocolated covered nuts when they know I cant eat nuts, Or the pink coloured stuff when I have an aversion to pink and they know it.)
    Oh I love planning a trip overseas and sometimes its even more exciting waiting cos once its actually happening and over its like all that time and its overs and the let down can be hard too.

  3. I read a wonderful post today by Glenda Mills at waiting. She's so encouraging and it was just what I needed to read. It seems as though I'm in a "waiting season" in my life right now - waiting for many "normal" things such as our pregnant goat to give birth any time in the next two weeks, for home-school to be out May 30th, etc, but specifically waiting for the Lord to lead me in my writing. I am waiting for responses from agents, from publishers, from gate-keepers, etc. and sometimes it's actually painful. But Glenda's question prompted me to put on my armor and be at the ready. I remembered reading that the Israelites time in the wilderness wasn't really just punishment, but it was discipline, teaching them to have a better understanding of the value of the Promised Land. That's what I need to focus on - the value of the promise to come.

    Blabbed on, didn't I? Oh well - would love prayer for patience!

    1. Thanks Becky for sharing this :) What you say is so true and a good reminder - that the wandering in the desert wasn't just punishment. I needed that perspective, so I'm so glad you shared it :) Will definitely be praying for patience for you! God bless!

  4. Hey Helen, I didn't realize that Downton Abbey hadn't made it to Australia yet. I'm glad you waited. It's hard to wait, especially in today's day and age when everything is right at your fingertips. You're right, patience does give us a better appreciation for what we've waited for. That's what's wrong with the world today -- no patience or appreciation for anything.

    1. Gwen, Season 1 aired last year, but they've made us wait an awful long time for Season 2! Episode 2 tonight, so excited again :)

      So true - we need to be more patient and then we can appreciate things!