You know those prayers, the ones we pray over and over in slight desperation, longing for God to “say ‘yes’ already!” It’s right in the middle of those exact challenges or fears or desires that I’m convinced He wants to multiply our faith…if we’re willing to believe that because He loves He may purposefully delay.
It’s one of those aspects of God’s eternal perspective that both encourages my spirit and causes me to sigh. It encourages me because He knows what He’s doing. His timing is perfect. He works all things together out of His immeasurable, perfect love. But I sigh because…I mean…”say ‘yes’ already!”
We see Him display this aspect of Himself with Mary and Martha. Remember when their brother, Lazarus, was ill? In their deep concern, the sisters sent for Jesus. When Jesus heard the news…He stayed put. That’s right. He didn’t rush to their house or freak out. He waited. Purposefully.
Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus. So, when he heard that Lazarus was ill, he stayed two days longer in the place where he was.
Out of His love, He delayed.
Two days later He set off to their house. And when He arrived, Lazarus had already been dead for four days. Martha said, “Lord, if You had been here my brother would not have died.” What they didn’t know is that He had delayed so that they would see God’s glory. (John 11:4)
When He got to the tomb He prayed and then cried out in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” And Lazarus did. Death to life. Weeping to shouting. Ashes to dancing.
He may delay. But it isn’t purposeless. It’s in love because He is love. Hope rises when we believe.
Fill me, Lord…
How is He delaying in your own life these days?
What does seeing the delay through the lens of His love do to your spirit?