God is never late. He is always on time. He has specific plans for each one of us and He has a perfect timeline in which to accomplish them. Elisabeth Elliot understood this as she wrote:
“When our plans are interrupted, His are not. His plans are proceeding exactly as scheduled, moving us always (including those minutes or hours or years which seem most useless or wasted or unendurable).”
God sees the big picture. He knows all things, from beginning to end. He can handle the start to finish, near and far, end-to-end, and the highs and lows… we can’t! God knows that our frame is but dust (Psalm 103:14). That is why He limits how far we can see into the future. Otherwise, we would easily become overwhelmed.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 (NKJV)
We need to be careful of Destination Addiction. We should not be preoccupied with finding the next place, the next job, the next love, or the next opportunity. Thinking that our happiness and contentment lies only in the future is a common practice but what about today? Does God only provide hope for tomorrow or is there joy to be found in our present circumstances?
We have find contentment in the day… where we are right now. Even if it feels like we are stuck in a rut and life appears to be nothing but a series of boring routines, there is joy to enjoy. It requires some practice to find the beauty in darkness, grief, and an uncertain future. We a not assured of tomorrow so why not work on a new perspective?
“Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth.” Proverbs 27:1 (NKJV)
“Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content.” Philippians 4:11 (NKJV)
Our joy comes from a thankful heart. Are you thankful for a loving and merciful God? Joy comes in knowing we have been promised eternal life and that we will reign with Christ. Joy comes from the promise that our trials are for but a season and that they serve to sanctify and equip us.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” 1 Peter 1:3-5 (NKJV)
“For our heart shall rejoice in Him, because we have trusted in His holy name.” Psalm 33:21 (NKJV)
“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 1:6-7 (NKJV)
“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:2-4 (NKJV)
It was God’s will and in His timing that Abraham and Sarah born their son, Isaac. And it was God’s perfect will and timing that Mary conceived our Lord while betrothed to Joseph yet still a virgin. Consider King David and the patience required to wait for his kingdom. He was probably fifteen years old when Samuel anointed him as Israel’s ruler. However, Saul continued on as the King for nearly fifteen more years.
Trust comes when we remember God’s faithfulness to us. There are countless stories in the Bible that show the faithfulness of God but it takes time to train His children. If you need some inspiration, read the story of Moses in Exodus and the incredible story of Joseph in Genesis 37-45. I pray these men encourage you. My hope is that you find contentment in your day and joy in knowing that God’s timing is perfect.