2007-04-27 - In the Meantimes
Two weeks ago, we looked at what we should be doing in the "meantimes" of our lives, where we spend a lot of time. But there are some things that we should also be on our "should not" lists. In the meantime,
With no disrespect to the 10 Commandments:
"Thou shalt not" be impatient. As the Bible reminds us, with God, "a thousand years is as a day." Today, many of us live in an "instant" society of microwave ovens, "instant" messaging online, DSL service etc. Some of us have gotten to the point that we can't even wait 30 seconds to be online; we "have" to have faster service than "dialup!" But as you have probably discovered (I know that I have), God's timetable is often slower than our own. We want the perfect job, the perfect mate,the perfect church, the perfect home - "now!" But it took the Jewish people 40 years to reach the Promised Land. We need to retain (or regain) a sense of perspective.
"Thou shalt not" fret. I know; that is "easier said than done." Sometimes I think we feel that worrying is part of our responsibility. But as James instructs us in James 1:6 (NASB):
But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind.
It's perfectly alright to admit doubt to God; after all, He already knows, anyway. So there's no use in attempting to conceal it. Rather, we should follow in the footsteps of the father who was afraid to dare to believe that his young daughter would be healed (See Mark 9:24), who requested of Christ Himself to "help (my) unbelief."
"Thou shalt not" jump ahead of God and take things into your own hands. Remember how that turned out for Abraham, when he pretended Sara wasn't his wife? He didn't "quite" trust God to protect him, so he added a little "insurance." And in turn, Sara felt that God could use a little help from her - in order to provide an heir, so she set up her husband with their maid. The repercussions of that decision are still felt today in the Middle East, among warring factions. One of her sons was even the ancestor of Muhammed himself.
Let's ask God to help us make the most out our "meantimes." As the bumper sticker reads, "life is what happens when you are making other plans."