, , , , , , ,

Time is relentless. It moves forward of its own accord. We plan against it, rail against it, and wish for more of it. But if there is one thing I have learned in 2012, it is that God is more powerful than time. When we are living in God’s will (as close to that as we are capable of doing, that is), His will is done in our lives exactly when He wills it—not a moment before, nor a moment after.  Our choice then is whether or not to trust God that His best for us will happen as it should at exactly the best time.

God doesn’t supply us with a five-year plan. He won’t tell us that, if we are patient, He will open the door to a great job by this time next year. What He does is open doors nonetheless – in His time. And close them—at His will. We have no warning. One minute we are struggling with worry about the future, and the next we have an unexpected solution. One minute we are wishing for something we think we need in order to achieve our goal, and the next we are dashed when our plan doesn’t pan out. Then later we are elated to discover that God had something better in mind for us. If we pay careful attention to each of those moments, we quickly begin to realize that God does indeed provide us with a method for dealing with time and with our uncertain futures. He offers us the peace and comfort of faith.

We can know in our hearts that God will work in our lives in our best interests when He wants to. And He will. Yet, we still struggle with worry about when He will act and what will happen to us when He does. Or we can understand with faith that no matter when or what His will proves to be, it will be better than anything we could have imagined. God will take care of us.

Does that mean we shouldn’t work, save, educate ourselves, or make ToDo lists? Not necessarily. Because if we didn’t do any of those things, but lived each moment doing only God’s work on earth by caring for others and spreading the Good News, I have no doubt that He would provide food and shelter enough to keep us sustained. But if our calling is to do His work through education, or management, or by digging wells in the desert, we need to undertake processes that take time. God does provide us with exactly the tools we need to move about in the world of academia, business, or theology while obeying Him, and they are found exactly in His Holy Word. But faith is what I am talking about here today—the Faith that as we move about, following His Word, doing His work, always listening for His voice, constantly keeping the channel of communication with Him open through prayer, we need not ache with worry about what the future will bring. God will provide exactly what we need, and exactly what we need will be far better than what we might think we need—and all of this will happen at just the right time.

I saw this happen time after time throughout my past four years with Christ. This past year, I came to believe it, and to anticipate God’s faithfulness to provide. I stepped off the ledge of worry and endless lists and spreadsheets onto the thin air of Faith—and God placed firm ground beneath my feet.  I know in my heart, mind, and soul that God will close every door not fruitful to me, and open just the right ones at just the right time. I live for Him first. I am in love with God, and pray every day for that love to flow through me into the world. And I don’t worry about the future. God’s strength will get me through bad times. God’s faithfulness will provide in lean times. God’s abundant love will fill me with the riches of living for Him.

Indeed, Jesus tells us nothing less than this, time after time, over and over again:

Matthew 16:7-10

New Living Translation (NLT)

At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn’t brought any bread. Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, “You have so little faith! Why are you arguing with each other about having no bread? Don’t you understand even yet? Don’t you remember the 5,000 I fed with five loaves, and the baskets of leftovers you picked up? 10 Or the 4,000 I fed with seven loaves, and the large baskets of leftovers you picked up?

Mark 4:35-41

New Living Translation (NLT)

Jesus Calms the Storm

35 As evening came, Jesus said to his disciples, “Let’s cross to the other side of the lake.” 36 So they took Jesus in the boat and started out, leaving the crowds behind (although other boats followed). 37 But soon a fierce storm came up. High waves were breaking into the boat, and it began to fill with water.

38 Jesus was sleeping at the back of the boat with his head on a cushion. The disciples woke him up, shouting, “Teacher, don’t you care that we’re going to drown?”

39 When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Silence! Be still!” Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm. 40 Then he asked them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

41 The disciples were absolutely terrified. “Who is this man?” they asked each other. “Even the wind and waves obey him!”

Luke 12:28

New Living Translation (NLT)

28 And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith?

Mark 11:22

New Living Translation (NLT)

22 Then Jesus said to the disciples, “Have faith in God.”

Happy New Year, dear friends and readers. I wish you a faith-filled year in the faithfulness of God!