“When God called me [Apostle Paul] by his grace so that I may preach, I did not consult any man. Then after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to get acquainted with Peter and stayed with him fifteen days…Fourteen years later I went up again to Jerusalem, this time with Barnabas.” Galatians 2:1
If I have learned anything in the world of ministry it is that we are on God’s time, not ours. Over the past fifteen+ years of encouraging, writing, speaking, sharing with others about the goodness of Jesus, I have learned one very important rule—God makes those He uses, wait.
It’s plain and simple for His workers—He nudges, He inspires, He perfects, He readies, and THEN He moves you.
Maybe, if you have been seeking answers to move forward in a ministry, or a project, or any God-centered role—maybe, just maybe, God wants to grow you a little bit more. Maybe you’re thissss close (que the thumb and forefinger pressed together), but a little bit longer needed, for the greatness that will eventually be yours.
Can I just tell you, my green bean plants are exploding with pods! Each morning the harvest is much. I’m coming in with bulks of beans. But as much as I want to pick all of the beans, off all of the plants, experience has taught me not to. Experience has taught me, although they look ready, the fruit will be so much better if they stay on the plant just a little bit longer. The beans will be sweeter, the taste richer, the texture softer—the wait, beyond what is seen, will be so much better.
Everything on the surface for you and your nudging, at a near glance, could be looking like the harvest is ready. You feel it, you know it, you want it…but then nothing. You were certain God wanted you out of the gate and into the race, but then He seems to do an about face and it feels like a big fat heavenly “no.” May I encourage you to see—it’s not a no! It’s a wait! A wait…not because He wants to waste the fruit, but because it needs just a little bit more time to grow. Grow… so your words will have more meaning. Grow…so your confidence will be stronger. Grow…so you can weather the storms. Grow…so you can help others grow.
If you are in God’s waiting right now, I want to deeply and emphatically remind you with an open and loving heart, you are not discarded, not shunned, not being turned around—but are in His waiting. You are in that very special sweet spot that God is creating, to ensure you are ready.
I want to encourage you, dear one, reading this right now who is filled with anxiousness over the why’s and the why-nots of what seems like a stalled direction of God, when it seemed all real and full of life and hopeful just a short time ago, but now is void of growth and depth…it isn’t!! It is still full of life!—It's just growing a bit more. It’s becoming sweeter, and deeper, and more perfected by the One who created it.
I love a statement by Oswald Chambers:
“Wait on God and He will work, but don’t wait in spiritual sulks because you cannot see an inch in front of you!…To wait is not to sit with folded hands, but to learn to do what we are told.”
Friends, let us do our best not to spiritually sulk because we are waiting. Let us be mindful and hopeful of what is coming our way, in order to make a way in what God wants. God’s waiting isn’t emptying, it is perfecting—always!