The Color of Anticipation

Orange.  Warm, wonderful, wild orange.  Bought in the dead of winter for toes hiding in thick wool socks and cozy Uggs.  Usually I stick to more conventional…ok…normal colors.  But last week upon exiting the local grocery store, orange caught my eye.

My mind rushed to mid-year break.  Soon, I’d pack my bags with summer clothes.  I’d strategize the least amount of layers I could wear to the airport without freezing for the relatively short distance to donuts, mangoes, and sun.  What would I change into during our layover?  Or, will I change upon reaching our tropical destination?  Anticipation.

Anticipation wields a double-edged blade.  On the one hand it sparks a fire in the everyday as the moment approaches.  Tick off more things on the check list.  Come to a stopping or pausing point in a routine activity.  Contemplate the needs of others in the same situation and speak into the worry, anxiety, and stress of a conference.  Anticipation can move me towards action.

On the flip side, anticipation can start the slow slide toward disengaging too early, of coasting towards the day that I know will come.  I’ll deal with that later, my heart says.  That conflict, that difference of opinion that looms large, that kind word I want to speak.

Important things get put on the back burner as I count on the awaited event radically changing my outlook on life.  Relatively minor activities gain utmost importance like should I or should I not take beach towels?  I’ll have to wash them.  I don’t have a washing machine. But, it’s nice to have more towels.  They’ll get sandy.  On and on my mind goes…anticipating the beach.

Tonight as I paint my toenails orange, I hope the warmth of that color will rouse some praise in my heart about the gift of a break from the cold and fellowship with friends.  Then, as I look at my toes in the tropics I hope orange reminds me to live not just for myself, my break, my fellowship but for whatever He anticipates for me.

What are you anticipating?  What reminds you to live for Christ in the anticipation?