Feb 19, 2016

It's about time...

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As we read through the book of Exodus, I am constantly amazed at the faith and perseverance of Moses. Good gracious. This man is truly incredible.

So many times recently, I have found myself complaining just like those ungrateful Israelites that Moses was leading through the desert. I mumble, and I complain. I huff and I puff.

Then, I am reminded of Moses. He never complained. He just kept going. And going. And going.

When the crowds complained and blamed Moses for their misery, Moses prayed for them and begged God to forgive them for their sins.

I want this kind of heart. A heart for those around me that get on my nerves. Those that I think God put on this earth just to bug the living daylights out of me.

We read in Exodus 32 about the people asking Aaron to make them an idol to worship and go before them. They were tired of waiting for Moses to come down from the mountain. As Moses was up on the mountain receiving the 10 commandments from the Lord, the people were melting their gold to form an idol to worship.

When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.”
Exodus 32:1

They were impatient. They were anxious. They wanted an idol to worship. They did not want to wait for Moses. They wanted what they wanted, and they wanted it now.

Oooh. This little piece of scripture steps on my chipping red toe nails. How many times have I jumped ahead of the Lord's plan for me? How many times has something become an idol to me because I was tired of waiting on God's plan?

Too many to count.

Let's see what the Bible tells us about waiting, shall we?

The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, To the person who seeks Him. Lamentations 3:25

but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31

Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him. Isaiah 64:4

We can stop here. Although, we could go on. For days.

In a bible study that I do with some friends on Tuesday mornings, we are studying Nehemiah. Nehemiah had a big, huge, desire in his heart. Yet, he prayed and fasted for four months before he did anything about it. FOUR months, y'all!

I cannot help but believe that the way our culture is today, it is prime time for the enemy to tell us lies about waiting. The enemy wants us to believe that if we cannot get it now, like we can most everything else, then it is not worth waiting on.

Think about it. We can pretty much get anything we want from the touch of our fingertips. ANYTHING.

Waiting is kind of old news in today's world, right?

For heaven's sake, if I go to the grocery store and there are more than 2 people in front of me I get panicky and look for the quickest self-checkout lane.

We are not accustomed to waiting. We just don't have time for it.

When we don't go through the long days of waiting for something, we miss the growth. We miss the character that develops from waiting.

Think about an embryo. It has to take many days and many months in order to be stable enough to survive outside of the mother's womb. Without the full waiting time, the baby is at great risk for failure to thrive.

The same is for us. When we jump ahead of the waiting time, we miss out on the full blessing that God has for us. We become at risk for failure to thrive.

Just like the Israelites, we look for a substitute. A quick, man-made substitute to fulfill our gaping need.

Isn't that just like sin? A cheap, easy, and hollow substitute for the real deal. God's fruits are real, tangible, and satisfying. Sin is anything but. It is short-lived, and satisfaction will never be found there.

Due to the Israelites constant rebellion, the journey to the Promise Land took 40 long hard years.

I wonder what would have happened if they would have waited patiently and joyfully during that time. What if they would have praised Him and trusted Him in the waiting, even when the days were long and dark.

Friend, something amazing happens when we can learn to be still, and know that He is God.

Something supernatural and extraordinary develops in our spirits. Something that God could not develop in us except through the waiting.

Jesus was 30 when He began full time ministry. 30! Why not 20? I mean, He was the Son of God?

God had a perfect plan for Jesus, and it took 30 long years for Jesus to be ripe for the season of His ministry. God had to align the hearts of all of the others that would be affected by Jesus as well.

In our limited perspective, we cannot see the many details God is laying out and preparing for the timing of our lives. The details to find the right spouse. The details for our wombs to conceive at just the right time. The details of bringing our dreams and desires into fruition. The details of preparing the heart of a wayward child or family member that we think will never see the light of day. The details of the good that will come from a tragic loss and grief.

It takes time.

Jesus came down to  Earth in the womb of Mary after a long, dark, cold period of silence and waiting...over 400 years between the last book of the Old Testament and the birth of Jesus.

This time has actually been called "The time of silence". I shudder to imagine this. I cannot imagine the darkness.

Jesus' arrival was the exact time God had planned.

The fullness of time had to take place.

But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, Galatians 4:4

Are you in a season of waiting?

Oh, friend, I know it is so hard. So hard.

However, look to Him in the waiting. Worship Him. Thank Him. Remember back to what He has done in your life. Look for Joy in the waiting. It is there, because He is Joy. Joy is always with you.

The Joy of the Lord is your strength. Nehemiah 8:10

It is okay to be discouraged. However, don't let your discouragement take you out of the will of God. Press on, just like Moses did. And the next day, press on again. And again. And again.

The fullness of time will come. And it will be sweeter than you could have ever managed to attain on your own.

waiting in faith,


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