…But we don’t want to wait. We want what we want, and we want it right now… But that’s not God’s way. He doesn’t mind waiting, and He doesn’t mind our waiting either. In fact, He goes out of His way sometimes just to put us in situations where we can do nothing but wait. Been there? Are you there now? If so, cheer up! The psalmist tells us to be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. If anything matures our faith, it’s this – waiting for the Lord to act when no other power can help. Read any Christian biography and what do you find? Normally, we see that the experience of the growing believer is punctuated with frequent and sometimes extended periods of waiting. Waiting for what? Waiting for God to step in and do what we can’t. It’s in the waiting and hoping, waiting and praying, waiting and expecting, that our faith stretches or takes quantum leaps forward. God is worth waiting for.
… The word ‘impossible’ isn’t part of God’s vocabulary. It’s a word we thought up on our own and we think it carries lots of weight. But it does so only when we subtract God from the formula. If there’s no God, the kind of God portrayed in the Bible, then we would have every right to think that there are all kinds of impossible things in the world. But it makes perfect sense that if the God of the Bible exists, then there’s nothing, literally nothing, that’s impossible. By definition, God excludes the realm of the impossible. Water into wine? No problem. Quelling a storm? Easy. Bringing dead bodies back to life? Done. That’s the paradigm we need to use when viewing life’s problems and fears.
… there’s no power available to us on earth that’s greater than what Jesus holds in His hands. Nothing can happen to you or me that He’s unaware of or that can confuse or surprise Him. If it’s happening, it’s happening by His permission and it’s something working for our good. It can’t have any more authority over us than He allows, and there’s no one who can have more power to deliver and rescue us than Jesus. That’s something we can rest secure in.
… We are so conditioned by our own experience of life that it’s hard to imagine anything else. We plan, strategize, and strive to reach our goals, yet we’re frustrated in the attempt by a hundred different things. So we go back to the drawing board and come up with another plan or way of getting it done. Not so with God. What He plans, then announces, then goes to work bringing to fruition will occur just as He determined. What He promises will happen. What He says is as pure as highly refined silver. There’s no equivocation, no backpedaling, no deceit. If God says that He rescues us by His own planning and decree, that nothing can snatch us from His hands, or that He’ll be totally faithful to us in all circumstances, then it’s one hundred percent true. What He promises will come true even if it means a lifetime of waiting. … Don’t worry – if it’s good for us and fits His plan for us, it’s a done deal. If not, He ‘ll protect us even from our greatest desires.
… This conviction of a higher order grows with each new advance of faith. With the passing of years comes new levels of spiritual maturity, and eventually we realise that there really is a higher way in the universe than what we learn from ordinary life. The experiences we go through, things that happen to us, people we meet from day to day, lessons we learn through every new trial, odd coincidences we observe, losses we suffer, advantages and promotions we enjoy – all of this is part of a purpose that transcends our own and points toward a well-thought-out plan and a destiny beyond the present earthly order. We can be sure that the meaning of many experiences in life will remain almost a complete mystery to us until we come to a place where they are allowed to unfold and make sense within the higher purpose.
… God is the only true and lasting source of energy and strength. He remains as powerful and full of vitality and life as He was the day He made the universe. He knows that we are going to run out of steam in a hurry. He knows we will end up in desperate need for more strength, more speed, more endurance, more energy, more patience, more faith and more of everything else just to get through the day – to keep going and complete the course. When we’re young, we think we can handle anything, only to find out later that life isn’t ordered that way. But it is in these trials where we finally begin to learn that we were never intended to go it alone or to depend upon ourselves to get there. Life reminds us that “they who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.” Nothing will overtake them; nothing will be too overwhelming for them. We begin to understand that we are supposed to grow tired and weary, we are supposed to stumble and fall, because that’s the only way we get the point of our inadequacy and God’s all-encompassing sufficiency. It’s then we turn to rest in the power and strength of God. As the Lord taught the apostle Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Cor 12:9)