Remember that Jesus walked wherever He went. He never seemed in a rush. He kept His own timetable, operated at His own speed, and never worried about qualifying for the 100 meter race. He never wore a watch, but He always knew the hour. He never wasted a minute, but He never rushed through a day. We're not used to that pace, and sometimes it seems to us that Jesus is slow to respond and late to the scene.
On several occasions during His ministry, Jesus appeared to have been tardy. When the disciples were in the storm on Galilee, He tarried until the "fourth watch," sometime between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. He could easily have rescued them at 9 p.m., and all could have enjoyed a good night's sleep; yet He waited.
Or remember the time Jairus beseeched Jesus to come and heal his daughter who was at the point of death. Jesus started in that direction but paused to deal with the woman who touched the hem of His garment. He arrived at Jairus' house too late, or so it seemed.
Similarly, when our Lord heard that His friend Lazarus was sick, He tarried two more days in the place where He was, and Lazarus died.
Christ was working on a different schedule, patiently waiting until circumstances were correctly aligned for the fulfilling of His purposes. He still employs the same keen, impeccable sense of divine timing in answering our prayers and directing our lives.
Quite often, the writers of the Psalms extol the virtue of waiting on the Lord. In Psalm 27:14 we read, “Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.” Wisdom and maturity are found in learning to tell time on God's clock, to develop a sense of His timing, to know when to work and when to wait.
The secret is PLACING ourselves in His hands and PACING ourselves according to His timetable. As someone said, "The delays of God are not meant to discourage our faith, but to develop it." An unknown poet put it this way: His wisdom is sublime; His heart profoundly kind; God never is before His time. And never is behind.
Over these 50 years in the ministry I have come to realize that the delays, disappointments, and postponements were all part of God's plan for something better.
The Lord Jesus Christ is Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last. He knows the end from the beginning, and the apparent delays in life are simply God's way of aligning circumstances for our benefit. If you're facing a time trial, don't compete with God's timing or be discouraged and abandon your hope in Him. Do as Psalm 130:5-6 suggests: “I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope. (6) My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning.”
May God's blessing be upon you this week as you read and meditate on the first message from I Peter 1-5 “The Bees Without Stings.”
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