About ten years ago, I was going through a tough time at work. I was praying to God asking Him to change something, because I was tired and bored with the job I was doing and I wanted Him to change something, anything. I needed something different. But nothing was happening, so I asked God why He didn’t answer my prayers.
Then one day I was watching an episode of the series “Touched by an Angel” when the character Monica, who was an angel at that TV show, said this to her assignment:
“Every prayer is answered. But sometimes the answer is ‘no’. And sometimes the answer is ‘not yet'”.
Not in my wildest dreams I would have expected God to talk to me through a TV angel! But I got it. The moment she said the words I realized, without a doubt, that the answer to my prayer was ‘not yet’…
At that moment I realized that God does answer all prayers, I just didn’t “count” it unless the answer was “yes”.
And soon I realized that I have a really hard time handling the answer when it is “not yet”.
Sometimes it seems that a “no” would be easier to handle. “No” means move on, forget about it, that’s not gonna happen. “Not yet” means… well, not yet. It will happen eventually, but not now, and probably not soon. It means that I have to wait. And waiting is something that I have a lot of difficulty doing. Even if I don’t say it explicitly, God knows that deep inside I am anxiously counting the days.
It also means that I have to be patient and trust God’s timing. Yes, I know that His timing is perfect. But couldn’t it be a little faster, please?
So, as you can imagine, learning to be patient is something that God is frequently teaching me. When I think I’m getting better at it, the possibility of something big comes along and I can’t wait to see how it turns out.
And in case you were wondering, God granted the request I made about my work. He did it in two phases: (1) back in 2002 a manager from a different group at work came and invited me to join them. Now I see that it was a relief that would give me more time, more opportunities to grow and learn, so I could be ready for (2) the moment when He told me to finally quit my job.
If you think about it, it took 10 years for my petition to be granted. And I can tell you that God did it at the perfect moment and in the perfect way. As always.
As I learn more and more to wait on God, the verse 10 of Psalm 46 is a Scripture that I always remind myself when I feel anxious about something:
“Be still, and know that I am God”
Question for you: How about you, are you usually patient or do you have a hard time waiting for God’s time?