Waiting for the Beauty to Appear!
Read: Galatians 4:4; Genesis 3:15; Isaiah 53:3-12; Romans 8:28
Let's have a show of hands. Who loves to wait? I'm guessing if the room were full of people of various ages from 3 to 93, no one would raise his hand. There's even an old saying about waiting that reminds us how tedious it can become. ‘A watched pot never boils.’ We keep looking at the water for signs of bubbling, but the seconds seem to tick off slowly while we wait for the water to reach the desired temperature; but wait. Is that expression really true? Does a watched pot really never boil? The answer is that it will eventually come to a boil unless I become tired of waiting and interrupt the process by removing the pot from the heat. When I make even something as simple as tea, having not waited for the water to reach the optimum temperature, the hot drink is not as good as it could be. All because I didn't wait.
I have been thinking about waiting and how it is such an ordinary part of life. For example, we have a mature peony bush in the back yard. It probably has twenty buds on it. They will open at various times, but none of them will open by my efforts to speed up the process. If I were to take the largest ones and try to spread them open with my fingers, I would destroy the up-coming beauty of the flowers. Each will open and display Creator God's unique handiwork at the time of His choosing.
God's creation is a reminder to me that His beauty unfolds on His timeline, not mine. He is not impatient or in a hurry, and He is never without a plan to bring about the fulfillment of His will. Let's look at Jesus' life as an example. Galatians 4:4 says that at just the right time, Jesus was born into the world. In Genesis 3:15, the first promise that the Rescuer would come was given. Sin with all of its evil intrusions had been brought into God's perfect world, but the Promised One would come. Not many details were provided to Adam and Eve, but the sweet promise of up-coming victory over sin and its resultant curse was presented to them. There was so much they didn't know. When would this One Who would crush the serpent's head come? He would have His heel bruised; but what did that mean?
Throughout the next thousands of years, God began loosening the tight bloom of that first promise. He revealed that the Redeemer would come from Abraham's seed, Genesis 12:1-3. He would come from Judah's tribe and David's line, Genesis 49:8-12; 2 Samuel 7:16. The beauty of the promise was showing more and more, but the time for fulfillment still hadn't come. Many other details were tucked into God's Word such as the truth that the Messiah would be virgin born and that He would be born in Bethlehem, Isaiah 7:14; Micah 5:2. Isaiah 53:3-12 detailed the suffering and the bearing of sin that the Unique One would provide for us. Out of the worst that man would do, the wondrous beauty of forgiveness would be provided. Yet hundreds of years would pass before the beauty of God's timing could finally be seen. Then at last it was time. Angels celebrated Jesus' arrival letting the shepherds know that the long-awaited hour had finally come, Luke 2:8-14.
After such an anticipated arrival, if we had never heard the story of Jesus' life, wouldn't we think that from the moment that He was born until the time of His death, that He would be doing amazing things each day? Surely there would be no "ordinary times" for the Savior, would there? Surely, He wouldn't have to wait to do His ministry of healing and teaching, would He? The answer is a surprising one. Jesus spent 30 years about which we know only a little. He didn't begin His public ministry until the age of 30. We know that He was submissive to His parents and that He grew physically and gained wisdom. He also grew in favor with both God and man, Luke 2:51-52. As He waited for His public ministry, He did the every-day tasks of life that were His duties. He waited for God's timing and did His Father's will, both prior to His public ministry and after it began, John 4:34; John 6:38.
The beauty of the unfolding of God's will is also seen in the timing of Jesus' death. The details were not orchestrated by the will of man; instead, it was the sovereign Hand of God that brought about when and how Jesus would die, Luke 4:30; John 8:59. Man could not and did not hurry up God's plan that brought about our deliverance. Although the work of salvation has been completed, and Jesus sits victoriously at the Father's right hand, Hebrews 10:10-14, the Lord continues to wait, 2 Peter 3:9. There are more precious ones that haven't come to Him; so, He has not yet fulfilled His remaining promises concerning His coming. How patiently He waits and continues to draw people to Himself.
Lord, Thank You that You have and continue to patiently wait for all who will come to You. Today, there is still time for those we love to give their lives to You. Lord, help us as we too wait. Help us to do the part You give us without trying to do what You alone can do. Help us to anticipate the Joy of the beauty of what will be seen when the waiting is complete. When we see Your beautiful flowers in bloom, help us remember that You will make what concerns us beautiful in Your time, Romans 8:28.