How Well Do You Wait?

It’s hard to wait. Waiting in traffic, waiting in line, waiting on hold with someone else’s choice of music playing in your ear. We find ourselves impatient and frustrated because we want to see progress. We want answers, we want resolution so we can move on.

Our society doesn’t wait well. Everyone, it seems, has no time to wait. We have too much else to do. Places to go, people to see, work to be done.

But there is a lesson to be learned in the waiting. God uses waiting to teach us to depend on Him and not ourselves. To trust His timing and not our own. He is never bound by the clock or the calendar. His timing has eternity in mind where today and tomorrow have little meaning.

Sometimes the things we have been asking the Lord to do in our lives are things we must wait for. You’ve heard the saying that God’s answer is either yes, no or wait.

Trust is like a muscle. It gets stronger when we use it. God uses waiting to strength our trust muscle. In the waiting, we are becoming more like Jesus.

It’s hard but there is no other way.

Psalm 27:14  Wait for the LORD; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the LORD.

More than You Can Count

It’s not uncommon these days to see large numbers casually thrown around with little thought. We see the billboards with the lastest lottery numbers into the hundreds of millions. We also hear about the national debt being in the trillions.  Just how big are these numbers? And can anyone actually count that high?

There are many people who have become millionaires and billionaires so I guess we can count that high. But what about trillionaires? Not so far.

It’s hard to visualize numbers this big but maybe this will help. A million seconds is approximately 11 days. How about a billion? About 32 years. And a trillion? how about 32,000 years!

We can barely get our minds around numbers that size. I read that if we could spend $1,000,000 a day and we started when Jesus was born we would have spent a trillion dollars by now. Incredible.

But we can count that high. We can really know precisely how much a trillion is.  Even though a trillion seems like an astronomical number it is still a number we can identify.

I’m glad we can count that high because it makes something we find in scripture even more amazing.

Psalm 40:5   Many, O LORD my God, are the wonders which You have done, And Your thoughts toward us; There is none to compare with You. If I would declare and speak of them, They would be too numerous to count.

God’s thoughts toward us are too numerous to count. More than a billion, more than a trillion.  If He were to think a new thought toward us every second it would take Him 32,000 years to get to a trillion and He would only be getting started.

When you feel small and irrelevant just remember how many thoughts God has toward you. He is the God of the entire Universe. His greatness surpasses everything we can possibly know and…

He is thinking about you.

One Brick at a Time

What if your life was like a brick wall? Each day of your life would be represented by one brick.  Each brick adding to the wall that tells the story of your life.

In scripture there are many references to walls. In most cases they represent the strength of a city or a nation. Some references speak of building up the walls and providing protection while in others the picture is of a nation being destroyed as it’s walls are demolished. There is strength in a well-built wall.

What if each day that you wasted left a hole in your wall? Would there be a lot of gaping holes? But let’s not get rigid about this — some holes might be perfectly acceptable. After all, a few windows here and there would add a nice touch.

But if wasted days are holes and you accumulate too many, you would weaken the whole wall.

What constitutes a wasted day? Perhaps one where you spent more time on yourself than on others. Maybe a day where you procrastinated and never really accomplished what you set out to do. Or it might be times when you spent the day nursing hurt feelings or holding a grudge.

We don’t always get it right, but each day we can purpose in our hearts to faithfully continue building.

One brick at a time.

Ephesians 5:15-17 Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.

Do You Have a Lot of Stuff?

This weekend I went with my husband to a tool collector’s auction and annual meeting. It was a wonderful group of people. The men were very knowledgeable about tools and the women had a vast knowledge of collectibles as well. It was a nice weekend, getting to know some new friends.

On Saturday night they always gather at one man’s home in a large two story barn that he built. He built the barn to hold all his vast collections. There were more interesting old items in that barn than I’ve ever seen. But as I looked at all the walls loaded with stuff I felt a sadness. All that stuff, all that treasure being stored up…on earth.

The scripture says we are not to store up our treasures on earth, but are instead to store them up in heaven where moth and rust will not destroy.

I have no problem with people who enjoy collecting things. I think it’s fun to learn about how things are made and used throughout history. But there was something sad about seeing this man’s life work displayed in his barn and knowing he can’t take any of it with him into Eternity. I overhead several of the older men talking together about what arrangements they are going to have to make for all their stuff when they die. One man teared up and said he didn’t know what to do since none of his children were interested in what he’d spent his life accumulating.  How sad.

It also made me think of the story of the rich young ruler. He asked Jesus what he needed to do for salvation and Jesus ended the conversation with direction to sell all he had, give to the poor and follow him. The young man went away grieved because he was so rich.

I’ve spent the past three decades raising a houseful of boys. We didn’t have the money to spend on expensive toys or extras. What we have isn’t worth much but we’ve still managed to accumulate a lot of stuff over the years. But I have to ask myself if Jesus asked me today to part with my stuff, little as that may be, would I be willing? Is my stuff standing between me and my Lord?

Would I be willing to sell all I have, give to the poor and follow Him?

Would you?

Matthew 6:19-21  Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal;  for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.