THE INCREASE: Mark Mitchell - Instant Gratification

“Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” — Psalm 27:14

I hate to wait. My image of hell is that of spending an eternity waiting in line. When I wait I grind my teeth, my blood pressure rises, my vision narrows and my temper erupts. I go to great lengths to avoid waiting. It’s not uncommon for me to arrive somewhere and say to my wife, “I made it in 43 minutes and 22 seconds. That’s a personal best!” She looks at me as if to say, “Who cares?”

Even though we may go to great lengths to avoid it, most of us are forced to wait several times a week — in traffic jams, supermarket checkout lines, banks and fast food drive-thrus. These everyday waits seldom fail to try our nerves.

But there’s another kind of waiting which is much more difficult. I think of the waiting of a single person for marriage, a childless couple for a child, the chronically ill for healing, those in dead-end careers for a breakthrough, or the lonely to simply belong. This kind of waiting is far more than just a minor, passing irritant, it’s a source of deep pain and prolonged heartache that drains us emotionally and spiritually. One of the things that makes waiting of any kind so difficult is that we live in a world afflicted by the need for instant gratification.

But the psalmist in today’s verse clearly tells us that we all must learn to wait on the Lord. It’s part of the normal Christian life. Are you waiting on Him?

— Mark Mitchell, San Francisco Giants chaplain

The Increase, part of the Sports Spectrum Network, is a community of Christian pro athletes sharing their personal stories of the decrease of self and the increase of Christ (John 3:30). Visit for more stories and videos.