My Life in Words
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Tomorrow is officially the first day of Summer! This is the time of year to enjoy being outdoors on warm Summer days. It is the time to enjoy going for a walk, swimming, riding a bicycle, or simply sitting in a nice comfy chair letting the Sun shine on your face. The days are longer giving us more time to spend outdoors with family and friends. It is often the time when families take much needed vacations to relax, re-invigorate and refresh their souls as they enjoy quality time together. These are all awesome things that we really should do and take the opportunity to enjoy.
But, what does God say about Summer? Lots actually. God speaks directly about most of the things I’ve already mentioned. God speaks to us about taking time to rest, relax and of course focus on Him during these Sunny days: Psalm 113:3 says From the rising of the sun to its going down, The Lord’s name is to be praised. He truly does want us to enjoy this time while reflecting on Him and praising Him. There is interesting timing with this in that this past week, our oldest daughter has been memorizing Psalm 23: The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul. When I hear this and I read this, it reminds me of how God truly does want us to relax, enjoy the green pastures and waters of Summer while we “restore our souls.” That is beyond comforting... However, He also gives us lots of instruction preparation during this time.
Proverbs is full of advice about preparing and harvesting for Winter as well as preparing for varying seasons of life. Proverbs 10:5 says: He who gathers in summer is a wise son; He who sleeps in harvest is a son who causes shame. Proverbs 6:6-8 says: Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest. Prior to this verse 24 refers to the ants as “little on the earth, but they are exceedingly wise.” Ants are wise. God gives them this wisdom. Although they are “little on the Earth,” they do harvest food for the seasons ahead. They work hard while they can for the seasons in life when they can’t. Wow! We can all take a lesson from these amazing little creatures.
However, as mentioned earlier, this time should not all be consumed with prep work for Winter. Surely God wants us to work hard and prepare for all of life’s seasons. But, He truly does want us to enjoy life as well. In addition, He certainly does not want us to worry. John 16:33 says: “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” The most important thing to remember from this scripture is, we should never let our restless spirit worry us. The victory is won. God is in control, watches over us and has our eternal destiny planned for us and it is beautiful. We have no need to worry.
For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
the Lord bestows favor and honor;
no good thing does he withhold
from those whose walk is blameless.
If you go back and look at a few of my posts over the last several months, you will see me talking about things like doubt, waiting, tough decisions, etc. I am fairly certain that all people have experienced these things during their lives. Maybe you are experiencing one of these things right now. Perhaps you have a doubt about whether you will get that job or finish a particular task? Maybe you have been patiently waiting for an answer from someone else about a big decision? Or, maybe you have simply not been able to come to a decision with what may be a really big life choice? There is one thing that all of these issues have in common... Timing. Are you doubting whether you can get that task done on time? How much time is it going to take for that other person to make a decision? How much time will it take for you to make a decision? What we really need to remember is, regardless of which of these or other scenarios we are talking about, ultimately everything really comes down to God’s timing.
In some ways, the times we live in are wonderful. In times of illness while it is impossible to get out and drive because of a snowstorm or other issue... No problem, there is instant tele-health available. Or, want to watch a particular movie, but the good ole’ local video store doesn’t exist anymore (yes, I am dating myself here), no problem... You can stream that movie instantly. Need that package quick? No problem... Amazon will have it here tomorrow. You get the point. But, that is not always the case. For some things, usually really important things, it seems like we need to have great patience as we wait on an answer. “Why?” we may ask ourselves. The reality is, if we are getting impatient waiting on an answer, or we are having a tough time with a decision of any type, we are likely not trusting in God. Proverbs 3:5-6 says Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Romans 8:28 says And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose. God always knows what is best for us. God also always knows when it is best for us to have a decision or an answer revealed to us. We simply need to trust Him always. I’ve always loved the statement that God always has one of three answers to any question about timing that we may have... Yes, no, or not yet. For us, while we are waiting on an answer, it may seem like it is taking forever to get our answer. But, for God, it is not taking long at all. It is taking the exact amount of time that we need to trust in Him.
2 Peter 3:8-9 says, But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. What seems like a long time for us is in fact a blip in time for God. We may at times be thinking a slow response from God means that He is not listening to us. But, the reality is, we are not taking time to be patient. God is patient with us and we in return should be patient with him. Sometimes we compare ourselves to others and wonder why something has happened for them but it is not happening for us. We need to realize that God has a purpose and reason for something not going exactly the way we envisioned it or planned it. God is never early. He is never late. He is always on time. We need to understand that our timing isn't God's timing. His perfect timing does two things. First, it helps us grow our faith as we wait and trust in God and it also ensures that He, and He alone, gets the glory.
We need to always trust that God always has our best in mind. If there are times that we don’t quite understand what it is that God is doing in our lives, or why He is doing it, or why it is taking the time it is to get an answer from Him, we need to remember what it says in Isaiah 55:8-9. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” So, as you are going through these times in your life when you are doubting what your future may hold, or wondering when something may happen or when you may have an answer, keep in mind that God really does have your best life planned for you. You just need to have patience and trust in Him to lead the way.