My Dear Friend,
As we continue to weather the storm, please know that God has not forgotten you, and that God is still working in us, even when we do not see it. Have a safe Independence Day and please remember that you are always loved and missed!
Love in Christ Jesus,
“Even youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted; but those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength.” Isaiah 40:30-31
God’s Way is Slow but Sure
In a devotional several weeks ago, we made note of the psalmist David’s tendency to ask in times of prolonged adversity, “How long, oh Lord?” Not long after our present adversity began, we all found ourselves asking that question. And now, with the recent news that we may be experiencing somewhat of a reversal, the temptation to ask, “How long?” may be even stronger.
Although we may not want to admit it, when people of faith ask God, “How long?” we are expressing disappointment in God’s allowing the adversity to extend beyond the timeframe that is acceptable to us. But as difficult as it may be to understand or accept, the hard truth is that when we are feeling such loss of patience and disheartening disappointment, it is usually in our best interest for God to allow the adversity to last even longer – for both spiritual and emotional reasons. This is because the only way I will ever be able to do what I thought I could not do is to keep doing what I think I cannot do. (Perhaps right now, you are saying what the disciples were saying to Jesus in John 6:60: “This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?”)
In today’s Biblical text, the prophet Isaiah foretold of a time when even “youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted” (Isaiah 40:30). We have reached that day. In today’s world, it is not uncommon to ask youthful persons who should be filled with energy and enthusiasm, “How are you doing?” and they reply with a sigh, “I’m tired.” (Little wonder, when energizing play in the “great outdoors” has been replaced with hours of viewing a fatiguing, small video screen.) The newsfeed is tiring.
“Youths will faint and be weary, and the young will fall exhausted; But those who wait on the Lord will renew their strength.”
Wait? Really? How long?
A professor of mine once said, “God has three and only three answers to prayer: “Yes,” “No,” or, “Wait…because I have something better for you.”
My father has a favorite saying that he’s repeated more times than I could ever count: “God may be slow, but He is never late.” And a great Black Gospel song of many years ago started with the line, “He may not come when you want Him, but He’s right on time.”
In this present global calamity and its ensuing personal hardship, I would encourage all of us to hang on and declare, “However long it takes, I will wait on the Lord. He may be slow, but He surely won’t be late!”