It’s Throwback Thursday! This EmpowerMoment was originally published on August 10, 2011. Enjoy this blast from the past!
“My spouse doesn’t seem to be interested in church.”
“I rocked that interview…but I didn’t get the job.”
“The job promotion I “deserved” was given to someone else.”
“God told me that He would open other doors for me, but He hasn’t.”
“Times are getting hard, I’m waiting on that “financial blessing” You promised me.”
“I’ve done everything in my power to change ___________situation but it isn’t working.”
“I have dated many men but none have ever popped the question.”
“I don’t think I’ll ever have another child after suffering that horrible miscarriage.”
“I’m sick and I can’t seem to get well.”
Many of us can find ourselves in at least one of the statements above. We have done something, experienced a life situation or prayed about something and feel as though we are being denied. It’s often hard to embrace but God does things according to His will in His own time and His time is actually always on time.
Consider the story of Lazarus: Now a man named Lazarus was sick. When He heard this, Jesus said, “This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” So then He told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. A few verses later, Jesus goes to Judaea and is taken to Lazarus’ tomb. “Take away the stone,” He said. “But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”So they took away the stone. When He had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.” (John 11: 1, 4, 14-15, 39-41, 43-44 KJV)
In Mary and Martha’s eyes Jesus was late. They called Jesus when their brother was sick but He didn’t show up until four days after he died. Jesus tells the disciples He was glad that He wasn’t there when Lazarus died so that they too would now believe. Isn’t that interesting? Sometimes God will show up in our lives when we think a situation is dead and breathe life into it so that we can see His glory and further increase our faith in Him.
Recently, I was attending the graduation of a friend receiving her PhD in Electrical Engineering (yeah she’s a smart cookie) and I was reminded that God’s delay (to you) doesn’t mean God’s denial. This was no ordinary graduation. My friend chose not to walk the stage for her Bachelor’s degree or for her Master’s degree and her road to the Doctorate was filled with MANY obstacles. It took her MUCH longer to complete than average and I am quite certain that the majority of people who endured the trials that she did would have bowed out gracefully. People questioned her commitment, talked about the length of time that she was in school and suggested that she should throw in the towel. It always amazes me that other people will allow their lack of faith to dictate how they believe you should live your life. She blocked out the naysayers and trusted in God alone. She believed that one day she would finish and her mother would see her walk across the stage. She was determined and had a tremendous amount of faith. I cannot explain the overwhelming pride, joy and goose bumps that I experienced when I saw her reach this milestone in her life. Through it all God was forever present. He never left her! He NEVER DENIED her!
Sometimes our faith is challenged when our timeline and God’s timeline don’t mesh. We can become absolutely downtrodden because our season has not arrived and the things that we believe God for have not come to fruition. What we forget is that God holds the roadmap for our life. He knows “when” to release our blessings so that He can be glorified and we will recognize the true source of our help. Delay does not equal denial.
Forgive us for mistaking what is a delay to us as a denial by You. You have said in Your word that You will grant us the desires of our heart and that You will supply our needs according to Your riches in glory. Help our unbelief! Remind us that Your will will be done and that You always show up at the appointed place at the appointed time. Grant us the faith and determination to persevere through what seems like never ending, challenging situations. Help us to endure because Your timeline is all that matters. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!
Today I EMPOWER you to consider Lazarus! Even in his death, the prayers of Mary and Martha were not denied. I EMPOWER you to throw your timeline away because God has a pre-appointed release on His divine calendar. Stay strong, continue to work and keep the faith. It may appear delayed but you are not denied!
Read a related EmpowerMoment: Living in the Microwave Age
Ms. Chancee` Lundy lives in Washington, DC and is an entrepreneur as she is the co-owner of Nspiregreen, LLC, an environmental consulting firm. She is also a dedicated daughter, sister, friend and community servant. She has used her gift of public speaking to lead workshops across the globe speaking to crowds as large as 10,000 people. Her guiding scriptures this week are Philippians 4:11-13 “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengthened me.”