God Uses Time to Help You Grow
“At the right time I will hear your prayers. On the day of salvation I will help you” (Isaiah 49:8 NCV).
At the right time, God can do anything instantly. In Isaiah 60:22, God says, “I am the Lord, and when it is time, I will make these things happen quickly” (NCV).
This is hard for us to accept because God’s waiting room is sometimes the most difficult place in life. We’re in God’s waiting room when we’re in a hurry for something to happen but God isn’t. Maybe you’re in a hurry to graduate or get married or close a big deal. You’re watching the time get shorter and shorter, and you say, “God, there isn’t a whole lot of time left. This either has to happen now or it’s not going to happen at all.”
But God isn’t subject to time. Because he created time, he operates outside of time. That’s why the Bible says in Psalm 90:4 that a thousand years can seem like a few hours to God.
He uses time to test your faith and to build your character. While you’re working on your goal, God is working on you. And God’s much more interested in you than in what you’re trying to accomplish, because you’re not taking your accomplishments to heaven. You’re only taking your character.
A lot of times we think we’re waiting on God for something to happen, like a prayer to be answered. God says, “You’re not waiting on me. I’m waiting on you. I’m preparing you. I’m testing your faith and trying to mature you, because the blessing I want to give you is so much bigger than you can handle right now. Will you trust me?”
Delays can be part of God’s design, to teach you to trust him and to grow up in your character. Isaiah 49:8 says, “At the right time I will hear your prayers. On the day of salvation I will help you.” Not “might”—God will hear and answer and help, when the time is right.
Talk It Over
What are you waiting for God to do in your life?
In what ways do you think God wants you to grow while you wait?
Do you want God to find you faithful in the waiting room of life? How does this show in the way you respond, both internally and externally, to delays?
This devotional © 2019 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.