Scripture references: Matthew 24:31-33, Psalm 123
“When is everything going to get back to normal?”
“And where is God in all of this?”
It’s been 1 year, 7 weeks and 3 days since the World Health Organisation officially declared COVID-19 a pandemic. During this time, most major cities around the world have experienced harsh lockdowns, only to grapple with massive health and economic costs after the easing of restrictions. Virtual meetings are now preferred over face to face gatherings. Affordable, unrestricted international travel is becoming a distant memory for us with cases recently spiking in India and Brazil.
A glance at the international news headlines is enough to breed fear, frustration and worry in the hearts of many. It’s easy to fear for the lives of ourselves and our family, get frustrated over the highly unpredictable COVID-19 case numbers or worry over the prospect of a potential economic collapse. But what I’d like us to focus on in today’s post is: “Don’t miss the season!”
Jesus gave an illustration of how important it is for us to understand the seasons (Matt 24:31-33). Being a Christian writer, this lesson has never been more relevant for me. Last year, the process of writing and publishing my first book, The Master Healer, tested my patience and trust in waiting for God’s timing. It taught me much about how I responded when things did not go as planned. In my post on waiting patiently and expectantly, I have not gone in-depth to address these questions: Why must I wait on God? What does it mean to wait on God? How shall I wait on God?
I think ‘wait’ is one of the hardest words anyone can hear. Especially going through the boring routine of life without seeing the exciting promises of God’s word come to fruition. It’s the equivalent of being made to stand in the middle of a dry barren field with cracked earth, wondering if anything can be grown on the land. When I’m in a season of waiting for God to fulfill His promises, in that “wilderness” experience, it’s always comforting to remind myself that the answers to the above questions about waiting are best answered in the Word.
In Psalm 123, the Psalmist says that he lifts up his eyes to God. He knows that God is enthroned in heaven. It’s a conscious decision to look up in a time of waiting. He reminds himself by looking up that God is on His glorious throne, far above all other nations, peoples and authorities. God’s authority is the ultimate authority. Being aware of this, we can be sure that all of our times are in His hands (Psalm 95:3-5, Isaiah 49:15-16). All of our life events are in His hands if we’ll trust Him.
Psalm 123:2 shows the attitude of how we should wait and gives us two examples here: servants with their master and a slave girl with her mistress. The first is to keep looking (present continuous tense) to the Lord for His mercy. Keep looking. Even if it doesn’t look like nothing is happening in the mundane, keep looking. It’s to be completely dependent, completely submitted and completely faithful. The servants keep their eyes on their master. Are you keeping your eyes on the Master?
Second, let’s pay attention to the Master’s slightest command. What has the Lord been asking you to do, however small it is? The slave girl waits for her mistress’s command. She’s attentive to every detail. She’s given her mistress her full attention. She knows what’s meant by every hand gesture, every nod of the head and every facial expression. So must we be with the Lord. We must desire to know him so intimately that we’re familiar with all His ways. This conveys the idea that we’ll be able to predict what His response might even be.
The more you live with someone, the more of their habits you know about and sometimes you can even be telepathic! Although it’s not entirely true about God, because His ways are higher, but the more of His character we understand, the more we’ll know what pleases and displeases Him. This is called active waiting. Let’s not be ignorant of the seasons He has ordained for us. Be active to pray, to seek the Lord, to read the Word during your season of preparation. Be active to step out and believe the promises.
4 thoughts on “Understanding the times: Don’t miss the season!”
This is so true, Ellice! I often want to just “get through” whatever trial I am going through w/o stopping to thank God for it and think about what He has for me in the middle of it. Beautiful analogy too.
Thanks Carol. Date palms and watermelon produce the sweetest fruit when they face scorching heat. In Him we can thrive amidst our circumstances.
Thank you, Elice. This is true. Yet, it’s so easy for us to overlook he fact that God IS in the waiting with us. Thank you for reminding us. Nothing catches God by surprise.