“But when the fullness of the time came, God sent His Son, born of a woman…”(Gal. 4:4 NASB)
Merry Christmas Everyone! Hope you had a wonderful day celebrating with loved ones!
The prophet asks, “Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been His counselor?” (Rom. 11:34). Can we know God’s plans and His timing? Asking “Why” of the Lord is futile… He doesn’t’ have to tell us…He is God! It is an oft asked question of the Lord, “When?”. “Lord! When will you answer my prayer?” Equally futile! We are an impatient bunch! We think our timing is the only timing. But Father knows best! Recently friends of ours just had their first baby after waiting some sixteen years – they are both in their forties. They received many words over the years that the promised child was coming. He did come…in God’s timing! God’s timing is the only timing that really matters. Waiting is our job – how we wait is the journey of sanctification. When it comes to God, it seems He is more interested in developing our character while we wait, then in actually answering our prayers. I think of Simeon, who was “waiting for the Consolation of Israel”, the Messiah (Luke 2:25). The Lord promised Simeon that he would not die until he saw the Messiah with his own eyes. It would appear from the text that he had waited for a very long time since he says, “Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation” (Luke 2:29-30). Basically Simeon says, “Now I can die…my prayer was answered!” How would you like to wait till your death day to receive your answer? NO!!!! PLEASE LORD HAVE MERCY!!!!
My father-in-law and I studied today’s verse together a lot – trying to figure out God’s timing. It was an impossible task! Only God knows WHEN! “In the fullness of time” is better translated, “When God thought it was the right time, He sent Jesus…”. Father Knows Best! There are lots of Simeons out there waiting for the Messiah to return. Many have predicted His arrival; they have all been wrong! Who can know the mind of the Lord! Why do we even try to know? God has a timing for everything! Even for my prayer to be answered! The psalmist writes, “I waited patiently for the Lord, and He inclined to me and heard my cry.” (Psa. 40:1) The Hebrew does not have the word “patiently”. When Hebrews wanted to emphasize something, they repeated it. Like “verily, verily” or “truly, truly”, the text actually says, “in waiting, I waited.” Benson writes, “doubling of the word signifies that he waited or hoped diligently and earnestly, patiently and perseveringly, until God should be pleased to help him.” This is the attitude of a good "wait"er - hope with diligence, earnestness, patience and perseverance.
Repeated prayers, crying out to God, pleading for mercy, was the lifestyle of King David – it was his sanctification process of learning to trust his God. It should be ours also. How long are we willing to wait for God to answer our prayer? We are finishing one year and about to start another. If your prayer wasn’t answered, “in waiting, wait”. Wait well; wait patiently! This may be the year! The promised Messiah took thousands of years to show up! If you are waiting for Him to return…this could be the year! Or, it may not! Whatever your petition or heart's cry, press into your God. Rest in the fact that God has it all figured out! In the fullness of His timing, He will answer. Keep hoping; keep persevering; Press on! And tell yourself, “Father knows best” and worship Him!
Have a blessed week....and 2023!
"Advancing the Kingdom of God by releasing Spirit-filled followers to serve Jesus in freedom and joy."