Do you ever get frustrated with God’s timing? I totally do. Somehow it always feels either too fast or too slow for my comfort level. A few years ago when my husband and I faced crippling financial struggles, I remember thinking God couldn’t act fast enough to rescue us. At the beginning of the trial I believed whole-heartedly that He would take care of it. I knew what the bible said about financial provision— it was a promise.
I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread. -Psalm 37:25
As we approached the edge of our personal financial cliff, I thought I understood what faith and trust in God was. Boy was I wrong.
When we didn’t immediately receive an influx of cash or a miraculous solution after praying in agreement for God’s help, I assumed we’d made a mistake in our expression of faith. So I built checklists in my head to help us implement the equation that would result in financial blessing—
Repent for mistakes that caused the hardship: CHECK
Improve the budget for better stewardship: CHECK
Always tithing 10%: CHECK
Sow an offering for a specific financial harvest: CHECK
Thank God in advance for His provision: CHECK
…and the list went on.
When the blessing I thought we needed didn’t come over the next few months, I revisited and revised the list. Nothing changed. As time marched on and our circumstances became dire, I moved away from my (religious) faith and tried to fix the problem in my own abilities… Still nothing.
It never occurred to me that God had other things on His radar that He thought we needed to deal with that were more pressing than the imminent financial problems.
His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are higher than our thoughts… -Isaiah 55:9
I rarely stepped back to ask God what He wanted to deal with– and when I did my heart was so invested in my own priorities, I couldn’t hear or receive what God wanted to say anyway.
The whole thing began, stayed, and remains outside of my comfort zone. But it forced me to surrender some new areas to the Lord— namely my timing and my priorities. It also taught me, on a whole new level, how important the attitude of my heart towards God is. You see, God was working on something much bigger in my home than our finances: He was establishing a truly Peaceful Home. In the middle of the storm I couldn’t process that. Nothing seemed more important (or peace fostering!!!) than trying not to LOSE our home or being able to pay our basic bills. I remember thanking God for our health and safety—but my perspective of what was really important stopped there.
Can I tell you something though… as difficult as that more than two year trial was, God was right. His timing was perfect and His priorities were way better than mine. (Imagine that…)
If you’re facing something that seems impossible and unending, and God just isn’t “showing up” in what seems like the appropriate timeline– consider the possibility that He’s dealing with your heart. Maybe you’re trying to summit the wrong mountain right now. You need to surrender your expectations to Him. I’ve found that God has more patience than I do and He can easily out-wait me. 🙂 The sooner we yield to Him instead of making an idol out of what we think we need, the sooner we can see and embrace the glorious work that He is doing.
Sister, I lift you up to our Father in Heaven— Jehovah Jireh, the Lord our provider, Jehovah Rapha, the Lord our Healer, and Jehovah Shalom, the Lord our Peace today, and I pray that your every need would be met. I pray that the Father would draw you nearer still to Jesus. And I pray above all that you may have an encounter with God that puts all of your fears to rest and changes everything in you and for you, in Jesus’ Name.