We all want good things to happen in our lives, but too often we want it now…not later. When it doesn’t happen that way, we are tempted to ask, “When, God, when?” Most of us need to grow in the area of trusting God instead of focusing on the “when” question. If you’re missing joy and peace, you’re not trusting God. If your mind feels worn out all the time, you’re not trusting God.
The tendency to want to know about everything that’s going on can be detrimental to your Christian walk. Sometimes knowing everything can be uncomfortable and can even hurt you. I spent a large part of my life being impatient, frustrated and disappointed because there were things I didn’t know. God had to teach me to leave things alone and quit feeling that I needed to know everything. I finally learned to trust the One who knows all things and accept that some questions may never be answered. We prove that we trust God when we refuse to worry.
God wants us to live by discernment – revelation knowledge, not head knowledge. It’s difficult to exercise discernment if you’re always trying to figure out everything. But when you’re willing to say, “God, I can’t figure this out, so I’m going to trust You to give me revelation that will set me free,” then you can be comfortable in spite of not knowing. Trusting God often requires not knowing how God is going to accomplish what needs to be done and not knowing when He will do it. We often say God is never late, but generally He isn’t early either. Why? Because He uses times of waiting to stretch our faith in Him and to bring about change and growth in our lives.
Wait With Patience
We spend a lot of time in our lives waiting because change is a process. Many people want change, but they don’t want to go through the waiting process. But the truth is, waiting is a given – we are going to wait.
The question is, are we going to wait the wrong or right way? If we wait the wrong way, we’ll be miserable; but if we decide to wait God’s way, we can become patient and enjoy the wait. It takes practice, but as we let God help us in each situation, we develop patience, which is one of the most important Christian virtues. Patience is a fruit of the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22). It’s developed only under trial, so we must not run from difficult situations. But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be [people] perfectly and fully developed [with no defects], lacking in nothing (James 1:4).
As we develop patience, the Bible says we finally feel completely satisfied – lacking nothing. Even our relationship with God involves progressive changes. My relationship with God is so much different now than it was in the early days of my Christian experience. It is not nearly as emotionally exciting…and yet it is better. Every change I’ve gone through has made me more mature, solid and well-grounded. We learn to trust God by going through many experiences that require trust. By seeing God’s faithfulness over and over, we let go of trusting ourselves, and gradually we place our trust in Him. Looking at it like this, it is easy to see how timing plays an important part in learning to trust God. If He did everything we asked for immediately, we would never grow and develop. Timing and trust work side by side.
Accept God’s Timing
God gives us hopes and dreams for certain things to happen in our lives, but He doesn’t always allow us to see the exact timing of His plan.