“I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.” Psalm 27:13 (NKJV)
When I am waiting for God to move on my behalf, it sometimes seems like He moves more slowly than molasses in January. The rest of my life, however, races by at breakneck speed and I often feel as if I am on one long, “Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride.” Sometimes, just getting to the end of the day, in one piece, can be a major victory.
It always amazes me that God brings the answers to my prayers at what appears to be the last conceivable moment, thereby averting yet another “disaster.” You would think that after each near miss, I would begin to learn that He is the ultimate in “just in time delivery.” I suppose you could say that since He sees everything in the light of eternity, what looms so large for me on any given day, is barely a “blip” on His time register.
Obviously, I am waiting for God to come through in some major areas in my life. This business of learning to walk in faith and learning to trust Him can sometimes be a bit challenging. In fact, it is really hard work.
My husband and I have been listening to a sermon series called “Thanksgiving Victory.” The premise of the series is that, while everyone knows it is correct to thank God after He has answered our prayers for a specific need, not many people think to thank God before He has met that need, answered that prayer, or moved on our behalf.
This pastor believes that the essence of faith is thanking God before hand, as evidence that you are trusting in Him to take care of whatever your need is. He maintains that there are only two states in life: you can either be thankful or unthankful. There is no neutral position. He states that if you are one, you can not possibly be the other at the same time.
Maintaining that mindset of thankfulness takes a lot of effort and persistence–thus the hard work. It would be easy to let fear overwhelm me, let complaining become my mantra, or take my focus off of the Father and place it squarely on the problem.
It is obviously God’s grace, mercy, and love that sustains us when the world seems at its darkest. As this same pastor has also said, “Jesus is not the Great Cowboy. He won’t drive the herd. He is the Great Shepherd. He leads His sheep.” It is my responsibility to trust Him and follow Him, even when I can’t see any farther than the end of my nose. This also is the essence of faith. I have to have such confidence in His great love, mercy, and goodness that I know He would not lead me into a brick wall for the greatest smash-up of my life.
I do believe, that as the opening verse states, I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.
“I will mention the lovingkindnesses of the LORD And the praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD has bestowed on us, and the great goodness toward the house of Israel, which He has bestowed on them according to His mercies, according to the multitude of His lovingkindnesses.” Isaiah 63:7 (NKJV)
Copyright © 2011 by Susan E. Johnson
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