God-Inspired Delays 01-11-17

(CLICK THE TITLE) Good morning and praise the Lord for mercy and grace. As I was in my study time I was thinking about a question I was asked by a new believer the other day about the length of time it takes for God to respond to prayer. Jesus answers that question in the meal today.

Today’s Prayer

Father, I pray for all those who are imprisoned. Some people are in prison for breaking the law; some for their faith; and others are imprisoned by sin. I pray that wherever and whatever the prison, Your Holy Spirit will be there to enlighten, bring conviction and repentance, comfort, wisdom, and help. I pray that lessons will be learned and that prisoners will find freedom in You. I pray for fresh starts and new life. I pray for miraculous testimonies that point people to Jesus. And I thank You for our Savior, in whose name I pray, Amen.

Let’s eat.

God-Inspired Delays

Yet when He heard that Lazarus was sick, He stayed where He was two more days. – John 11:6

Delays in our life are not always easy to handle or to reconcile in our minds. Often, when God doesn’t answer our prayers in the time that we feel He should, we appoint all sorts of characteristics to God’s nature that imply He doesn’t care.

The bible tells us that this was the case with Lazarus’ sisters when Lazarus became ill and died. Jesus was a close friend to Lazarus and his two sisters, Mary and Martha. (Mary, you may recall, was the woman who came and poured perfume on Jesus’ feet.) When Jesus arrived two days later, Martha shamed Him by saying, “If You had come he would not have died.” She implied that He didn’t care enough to come when sent for. It was a matter of priorities for Jesus, not lack of love.

God often has to delay His work in us in order to accomplish something for His purposes that can be achieved only in the delay. Jesus had to let Lazarus die in order for the miracle that was about to take place to have its full effect. If Jesus had simply healed a sick man, the impact of the miracle would not have been as newsworthy as resurrecting a man who had been dead for four days. This is Jesus’ greatest “public relations act” of His whole ministry. What many don’t realize is that the key to the whole story is in the next chapter.

Many people, because they had heard that He had given this miraculous sign, went out to meet Him. So the Pharisees said to one another, “See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after Him!” (John 12:18-19)

If Jesus had not raised Lazarus from the dead, there would have been no crowds to cheer the Lord when He came into Jerusalem riding on a donkey.

God often sets the stage so that His glory is revealed through the events that He orchestrates. He did this with Moses and Pharaoh, allowing delay after delay for release of the Israelites from Egypt. He did this with Abraham and Sarah for the promised child, Isaac. God granted Sarah a baby past the age of childbearing in order to demonstrate His power. God did this in my own life. He delayed the fulfillment of what I believed He called me to do for a number of years. But the delays provided the necessary preparation and greater glory that God was to receive.

My friends don’t take the delays lightly. Don’t faint as God places you in what seems to be a holding pattern. God is at work. God knows the purposes for His delays. Don’t give up, for they are for His greater glory; so we need to remain faithful.

Quote of the Day

The circumstances amid which you live determine your reputation; the truth you believe determines your character. Reputation is what you are supposed to be; character is what you are. Reputation is the photograph; character is the face. Reputation comes over one from without; character grows up from within. Reputation is what you have when you come to a new community; character is what you have when you go away. Your reputation is learned in an hour; your character is built in a lifetime. Reputation grows like a mushroom; character grows like the oak. A single newspaper report gives you your reputation; a life of toil gives you your character. Reputation makes you rich or makes you poor; character makes you happy or makes you miserable. Reputation is what men say about you on your tombstone; character is what the angels say about you before the throne of God.

William Hersey Davis






Written by Glenn Sterrett, Founder and CEO of the GCKRS™ Helping Hand Foundation.

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