I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. -Psalm 119:11
By Britnee Bradshaw (WITHIN Devotional Writer)
Our Father who is in Heaven is such a wonderful, compassionate, and loving Father. He truly does see the end from the beginning.
I was rummaging through an old box this weekend that was packed away in my parent's garage. It was filled with old books, journals, and other keepsakes that I had before my husband and I got married.
In one of the boxes, I found a journal from 2014. As I read through some of the entries, the faithfulness of the Lord began to consume my heart. So many of the things that I had prayed for, the Lord has answered over the years. I was able to see how big of an impact some of the things I had been asking God for, had on my life and the lives of those around me.
In my journal, I thought I was asking God for one thing, but attached to my one thing were so many other things.
There were two points that the Lord highlighted to me as I took my little trip down memory lane.
First, God’s way is perfect. His timing, impeccable.
Second, what God does in our lives, more often than not, has implications far greater than what we can see at the moment.
Psalm 18:30 says this, “God–his way is perfect, the word of the Lord is pure. He is a shield to all who take refuge in him.”
I’m sure we can all bear witness to not always feeling like God hears us when we pray to Him. Like, when we pray for a certain situation to change in our favor–maybe we’re praying for a specific job, or we’re wanting to see a relationship in our life be restored. Whatever it is, we are praying on bended knee to see that thing fulfilled in our lives.
However, do we take the time to consider the full scope of what the answer to our prayer would truly mean for all involved?
Remember, God wants to do a work in us first to build true intimacy with us. Then, He wants to do a work through us so that His Kingdom can be established in the earth.
Sometimes, we can pray amiss based on our needs and desires. The things we’re asking God for simply aren’t His will for us, and they would bring more harm than good to us. Other times, we can be praying the perfect will of God, but it isn’t yet the appointed time for that thing to unfold.
If you’re in a place where you’ve been standing in prayer for a certain thing that God has promised you, I want to encourage you.
Think back to Jesus. Think back to when He was finally sent to the earth to walk out his ministry and redeem all of mankind.
Now, the timing between the Old Testament and the New, according to scholars, was roughly 400 years. Add on the time from the beginning of Genesis to the end of Malachi, and you’re looking at a really, really, really long time before the appearance of Christ.
And yet, there were so many people who had spoken of the time when Jesus would appear in the flesh. So many had anticipated the coming of the King of Heaven. The true Messiah. & so many, who had longed to see the coming of the Lord, didn’t get the chance to see him face to face. However, they knew God’s track record for keeping His Word, and they trusted in His faithful timing and perfect will.
When Jesus came, He came at an appointed time in history (Galatians 4:4). He lived and walked among mankind with a specific assignment (Isaiah 61:62). He died a sinner’s death on the cross, and rose again by the power of the Holy Spirit so that everyone, past, present, and future, could be made righteous and be reconciled back to the Father (2 Corinthians 5:18).
Jesus did everything He was sent to do at the right time, for the right reasons, so that God the Father may be glorified!
My friend, some of the things you are praying for are much larger than you could imagine. Many of the plans the Lord has purposed for you will reach further than you could possibly know. If you’ve been waiting to see God move on your behalf in some area that He’s promised you, I want to encourage you this week to go back and remember…
Go back to the words that God has spoken over you that have already been fulfilled. And remember the timing you wanted Him to move vs. the timing He actually did.
Think about all the things that were connected to your answered prayer that you didn’t necessarily consider when you began praying for those things.
Go back and see what God was working in (and out) of you, to ready your heart for the things He promised you. Remember the process you went through and how God molded you for better, not for worse.
Our God is such a faithful God. He doesn’t always do things in the timing we would prefer, but He does do things at the most perfect timing for His will and His way.
And His way is always the best, isn’t it?
Yes, it absolutely is.
The weekly devotionals seek to encourage you to dig deeper into Scripture as you take the time to daily read, meditate, and internalize the verses in the devotional, along with the passages provided below to give greater context. Take the time to read them throughout the week (repetition is important) and ask the Holy Spirit to help you grasp what God is showing you about Himself, about you, and how to live in light of these truths.
Passages to read/memorize/meditate:
Questions to Reflect on: