When God's Timing Is Off
Got your attention, didn't I? God's timing is perfect, but our expectation of how His timing should work may be a little off.
In certain seasons of my life, I've wanted his timing to hurry up. How long, Lord, do I need to wait? For Mr. Right? For a cure? For a new job? For a better job? To buy a house? For a friend that "gets" me? For the finances to give and be generous?
Whatever it is, you may be waiting. And the reality is that waiting is hard. And while the idea that God's timing is perfect is true, what do we do with waiting when it seems like His timing is a little slow? How do we reconcile our hearts when we don't think we can wait another second?
On the flip side, God's timing can be too fast. That thing you knew was is the future is suddenly in the now. You're not ready for your baby to fly out of your nest to college or a full-time job. You're not ready for a move. You're not ready for that job change that's being forced upon you. You're not ready for your dream to come true today.
I've experienced both. I've been waiting on some things and I wonder if God has forgotten. If he could just give me a clue as to whether I should wait in hope or give up altogether? I've also been the one not yet ready for God to intervene so surely.
Most recently, I started a One Foot Bible study. Let's be gut level honest. Three months ago, I had no intention of starting said Bible study. I had a fleeting thought during my Master Coaching Certification class that we could somehow combine Bible Study and Life Coaching tools to help women apply what they were learning in a more meaningful way.
The idea was in the future. There were other ideas that came first in by business plan funnel. Retreats. More group coaching workshops. Printable coaching tools. Developing a Bible study was not on the radar. Or was it?
Before I knew it, I had mentioned the idea to a friend who attends my group coaching sessions and the idea gave birth to a baby. I would write a Bible study with coaching tools. We would start small. Test the idea on a few ladies. Everything would be fine.
Until it wasn't. Thirteen women signed up to come. And five writing clients made for little time to develop said Bible study. God was ready. I was not. Clearly, our timing was out of sync.
As I walked through our Bible study launch last week, I'm learning a few things about God's plan and timing that could apply whether you are waiting or not yet ready.
His Timing Really Is Perfect
We say it a lot. But do we really believe it. As I continue to wait for Mr. Right on year 47, I realize that each year brings me a blessing as a single adult. And while I wait for God to move and provide something different, I see God's timing for what it is. A chance for me to trust Him more deeply. A chance for God to use the waiting to soften my heart toward Him and others. A chance for me to appreciate every blessing - no matter how long I waited for it.
How do we trust in His timing? We choose to trust Him even when it feels like He may have forgotten us. We choose to trust in His timing when we'd rather be elsewhere. We choose to trust in His timing when we don't feel ready but He knows we are. We choose to trust and be present in our present because He is bigger than anything we are waiting for.
Just Because His Timing Is Perfect Doesn't Mean We Need To Be
I'm learning to let go of perfection. When my idea started becoming a reality, I had certain expectations. It was going to be PERFECT! The study I wrote in 6 weeks would be amazing. I would complete it and have it bound like a real Bible study book. The women would be impressed. I would be impressed. God would be impressed.
Reality came crashing down the week before our study began. I enlisted a writing partner/project manager. And after one very LONG weekend of trying to complete the study, I concluded I could kill myself by trying to GET HER DONE, or I could launch with a less than perfect product and trust God to do the impressing.
The end result were three ring notebooks with weeks one and 2 completed. We are on the write-as-we-go program. It's not spiral bound. I did my best with making it impressive. And I'm in the process of writing week 5 of our 8 week study this week.
God doesn't need us to be perfect, He just needs us to be available. God doesn't need us to be perfect, He just needs us to be faithful. God doesn't need us to be perfect, He just needs us to be obedient.
Whether you are not yet ready or you've been ready for years, God loves us when its messy. Maybe your messy is in the waiting. You don't know how to wait anymore. You are tired of waiting. You are wondering how to live with the tension of perfect timing that is not perfect for you.
Maybe your messy is in the not ready yet. You need to prepare. You have more to learn. Your season of life is crazy and you just don't have time.
Regardless of your season, God's timing is perfect but how you do life doesn't have to be.
God's Timing Is About Finding God In Your Present
To be honest, I was blown away at the response to my little Bible study. I had no idea how many women would be interested. I was honored to be able to lead another study in my own home even when I no longer work at a church.
Mostly, I was blessed as I observed our little group last week. Women connecting with women. Women seeking God. Women wanting to study God's Word for life change.
And I found the best place for me to focus was not on my to-do list. I have a list of things I intended develop way before I got here. The best place for you and I to focus on is not the things that haven't happened yet. I still have hopes and dreams that I am still waiting and hoping for.
The best place for you and I to focus on is right now. Be present. Enjoy the moment. Enjoy what God is doing today. Not yesterday. Not tomorrow.
One foot faith is about trusting God with your past, our present and our future. It's about acknowledging that we will love God even when we don't get everything we ask for in the time we expected. It's about embracing that God is always at work even when it feels like He's not. It's about riding the wave of the things you are not ready for and learning to trust Him in the surprises of life.
I'd love to hear about your own stories of timing. What are you trusting God for when it comes to His timing? And how do you navigate the tension of His timing is perfect while you wait or ride the wave?