Accept God’s Timing
God gives us hopes and dreams for certain things to happen in our lives, but He doesn’t always allow us to see the exact timing of His plan. Although frustrating, not knowing the exact timing is often what keeps us in the program. There are times when we might give up if we knew how long it was going to take, but when we accept God’s timing, we can learn to live in hope and enjoy our lives while God is working on our problems. We know that God’s plan for our lives is good, and when we entrust ourselves to Him, we can experience total peace and happiness.
The book of Genesis tells the story of Joseph, who waited many years for the fulfillment of the dream God had given him. He was falsely accused and imprisoned before the time came for him to do what God had shown him he was to do. Exodus 13:17-18 tells us that God led the Israelites the longer, harder way on their journey to the Promised Land because He knew they were not yet ready to go in. There had to be time for their training, and they had to go through some very trying situations. They wasted a lot of time wondering about God’s timing, but God never failed to take care of them and show them what He wanted them to do. The same is true in our lives. It was many years after I received my call from God in February of 1976 before I finally began to see major fulfillment of what God had called me to do. God’s training period simply requires us to do what He tells us to do when He tells us to do it…without questioning or trying to figure everything out.
Learn to Rely on God
Proverbs 16:9 says, A man’s mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps and makes them sure. Proverbs 20:24 says, Man’s steps are ordered by the Lord. How then can a man understand his way? When God directs our paths, He sometimes leads us in ways that don’t make sense to us so we’re not always going to understand everything. If we try to reason out everything, we will experience struggle, confusion and misery—but there is a better way. Proverbs 3:5-6 Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths. This sounds so simple, yet too many people make the mistake of trying to figure everything out themselves. Most of us have spent our lives trying to take care of ourselves, but when we accept Christ as our Savior, we must learn to trust our lives to His care. When we do, we can say with the psalmist, …I trusted in, relied on, and was confident in You, O Lord; I said, You are my God. My times are in Your hands…(Psalm 31:14-15).
First Peter 5:5 tells us that …God sets Himself against the proud (the insolent, the overbearing, the disdainful, the presumptuous, the boastful)—[and He opposes, frustrates, and defeats them], but gives grace (favor, blessing) to the humble. Anyone who thinks they’re a self-made man or woman has a rude awakening coming because Jesus said, …apart from Me [cut off from vital union with Me] you can do nothing (John 15:5). Humility is a covering that draws the help of God into our lives to protect us. When we humble ourselves by saying, “God, I don’t know what to do, but I’m trusting You,” God gets in gear to help us. God won’t allow us to succeed at anything unless we’re leaning and relying on Him. But when we humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God, in due time, He will exalt us (see 1 Peter 5:6). “Due time” is God’s time, when God knows we’re ready, not when we think we’re ready. The sooner we understand and accept that, the sooner God can work His plan in our lives.