Philippians 4:6 ESV
From the Jar
I’m not very good at waiting for God to act.
I’ve never been good at it. Probably the only person I’ve known who is really good at waiting on God was my dad.
He would pray and wait.
Pray and wait.
My Mom isn’t the kind of person who likes to wait on God. Even at 94 she’s an action oriented person. She’s type A+.
She was the Do-er in my family. If you had something you needed to get done she would jump right in.
Because she’s a Do-er she’s never been one for waiting. Once she sets her mind to something she wants to get it done right now.
Because one of my parents was good at waiting and my other parent was a Do-er, I think I was able to see the advantage of both worlds. Most of the time I fall somewhere in between being patient and being a Do-er.
However, there is one exception.
There have been times when God has revealed something is going to happen down the road but He didn’t show me when it’s going to happen. Usually, God reveals it in a dream or a vision. Once I’ve seen what God has planned, I want it NOW.
I do not want to wait.
Philippians 4:6 tells us, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.”
I came to a place when I was in my early 50’s where I needed a full-time job. I’d been working as a portrait photographer and I needed steady income. I was living in Des Moines, Iowa and since I wasn’t sure where to start looking for a job I went to a temp agency and applied. I clearly told them I needed two weeks before I started working in order to get a few things done at home. I applied on a Thursday.
On Friday morning they called me to tell me they had scheduled me for a training class beginning the following Monday. I reminded them I wasn’t available for two weeks but they said it was a great opportunity.
Okay. I took the job.
It was a great opportunity that allowed me to utilize my communication skills. Fifteen years later I was working in their Executive Communication Office and I started to think about when I would retire. Because of changes in the department, I decided to make a lateral move. I was no longer interested in taking on more responsibility in my mid-sixties.
I had been praying about when I should retire and while I had a target date in mind, circumstances made it clear I wasn’t sure I wanted to wait that long to retire.
For several months I struggled with my decision. I did come to a point where I was anxious and confused about what to do. Although I continued to pray about it, I was frustrated.
I felt like God should help me reach my target date. I didn’t get any answers.
Looking back I can see that because I wasn’t getting the answer I wanted, I was anxious and frustrated.
I finally gave up on the target date and I surrendered the matter to God.
Once I surrendered it to God it became clear that I needed to retire a year before I had planned to retire.
I did retire.
I’m glad I left when I did because the month I left my department announced sweeping changes in our area.
After I retired everything changed. Senior management over that area left the company.
God knew all along I needed to retire before my target date because everything was about to change.
I just didn’t see it coming.
Even when I surrendered the matter to God I didn’t know everything was about to change. Only God knew that.
My target date became a lot more important than it should have been.
The target date became the elephant in my space. I was so dead set on meeting the target that I missed the point.
God was in charge all along and God would take care of the details.
I just needed to let God be God.
Today’s Spiritual Practice is: Surrender
If you are struggling with an issue, surrender it to God.
In God, Deborah