In the last letter I talked about Hebrews 10:23 & 35. “ Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful…So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised.”
Then last week I heard a message by Sion Alford that really gave me additional perspective and I want to share my take on what the Lord has been showing him. Sion pointed out the difference between the promise of God and the will of God. He used the examples of David and Joseph and spoke about how they had been given promises from God that were not fulfilled for many years. However, each one of them had to walk in the will of God during those years and more often than not God’s will for them did not seem to reflect His promises at all. But through those circumstances God was working His perfect plan in their lives and establishing the character in them that they needed to be ready for the promise.
Often we try to bend and twist the circumstances of our lives to match the promise rather than seeking and walking in God’s will each day. What I heard was when our situation does not seem to line up with God’s promises we need to trust Him because of who He is and trust that He is working for good in our lives. His will may not always look like His promises, but rather than become discouraged and lose hope we need to continue to seek first His Kingdom and His will to be done on earth. And “all these things,” including His promises, will be given to us as well.
Sion shared what God has been using in his life to make all this real to him. Over two years ago he and his wife believed that they needed to sell their home and move closer to their church. They did all that they heard from God to do, prayed and trusted that He would bring a buyer. After over two years it still did not happen and they could not understand why. Then this July, due to a death in the family, they became the guardians of five children who are now living with them. Two weeks later their home sold. Had it sold earlier they would have bought a house to accommodate their three children rather than the eight they now care for.
God’s plans and His ways and His timing are perfect! We don’t always understand why the promises seem to tarry, but we can always trust Him.
With thanks to Sion,
written August 31, 2009