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God’s Timing

Earlier this year, my son got a 3-D puzzle of Big Ben, the famous clock at Westminster Palace. This particular puzzle has a working clock on one side. After we built the clock, he asked if we could set the clock to London time. I then moved the hour hand six hours ahead. He said, “Wow! London is six hours faster than us?” Now, whenever he goes by the clock, he announces what time it is in London so we’ll know the difference in their time and ours.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in life, it’s that God has a different time than I do. It’s not as simple as a six hour difference though. He doesn’t look at time by the hour like we do. He looks at circumstances and how they line up to tell time. Whenever I pray for something, I’m typically looking at my circumstances and ask God to intervene in that moment. God’s timing doesn’t just look at what I want in that moment, he looks at the ripple effect and how that affects other moments.

Like a child wanting something at the store, I often demand that God answer right now! To me, what I’m asking for is urgent, but I’m learning that God has a plan and will answer in His time and in His way. In Psalm 69, David is praying desperately for God to answer him. He felt like he was drowning in his circumstances and he cried out to God to save him. Then in verse 13, he changed his tone. He prayed, “Answer me, God, at a time you choose” (GNT). He understood that God’s time was different than His and He trusted God’s wisdom over His desires.

I’ve been learning a lot about prayer this year so I can better communicate with God. When I read this verse, it changed how I pray. I’ve got to learn to trust His timing and His answer. I can’t just look at my life through and circumstances through my lenses. I need to learn to see things the way God does so that I can better trust what He’s doing and when He’s doing it. If I trust Him for my salvation and as my provider, then I need to learn to trust His timing too.

Photo by Kate Krivanec on Unsplash

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God’s Timetable 

  
One of the most difficult parts of walking by faith is not knowing God’s timetable. So many times, it feels like we are to move on or we want to stay where we are longer than God’s plan. When things are going well, we want to camp in that place and stay there forever. When we’ve been stuck in one place and haven’t seen the growth we want, we are ready to move on. But most of the time, God’s timetable for moving on is different than ours.

There are times in my life when things start happening quickly, and I feel like things are moving in the right direction. Then, all of a sudden, I hit a brick wall. I get stopped at one point, and have to stay there for a while. I don’t know why we hit these plateaus or why God camps us out where He does. Some places it seems very logical, but other times it leaves me scratching my head and asking God why.

As I’ve read through the Israelites wandering in the wilderness, I came across some verses that showed they went through something similar. Numbers 9:15-18 says, “On the day the Tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered it. But from evening until morning the cloud over the Tabernacle looked like a pillar of fire. This was the regular pattern—at night the cloud that covered the Tabernacle had the appearance of fire. Whenever the cloud lifted from over the sacred tent, the people of Israel would break camp and follow it. And wherever the cloud settled, the people of Israel would set up camp. In this way, they traveled and camped at the LORD’s command wherever he told them to go. Then they remained in their camp as long as the cloud stayed over the Tabernacle” (NLT).

You and I have the responsibility of following God wherever He leads, whenever He moves. Verse 22 says, “Whether the cloud stayed above the Tabernacle for two days, a month, or a year, the people of Israel stayed in camp and did not move on. But as soon as it lifted, they broke camp and moved on.” You and I have to learn to be flexible with God’s timetable. We don’t have permission to move until He says it’s ok. If you want to experience all God has for you, follow His presence when and where it leads you.

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