God is my steadfast love and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield and he in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples under me. Psalm 144:2
In WWII, Japan surrendered to American forces and yet the news of the surrender took weeks and months to reach isolated Japanese garrisons. Soldiers continued to fight. Men continued to die. Those who were ignorant of Japan’s surrender were caught in the ‘not yet’.
I have often been confused by the promises of God. He is my healer. Does that mean that I will never know a sick period? He is my deliverer. Does that mean that I will never know a season of oppression? He is the God who avenges. Does that mean that He will settle all scores on the heels of wrongdoing? He is my strength. Does that mean that I will never languish in seasons of weakness? He is my shield. Does that mean that I will never be wounded by fiery arrows? He is my comfort. Does that mean that I will never feel alone or forsaken?
Now, I can know the right answers to all of those questions but I can get tripped up when I’m in a prolonged ‘not yet’ period.
Solomon said it another way in his well-known discourse. “There is an appointed time for everything. A time to give birth and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill and a time to heal; a time to tear down and a time to build up.” Ecclesiastes 3
Without listening to God in prayer, I cannot possibly guess which season I am in or how long it should last. I can easily be an agent that works against God’s purposes. I’ll try to preserve what God is dismantling. I’ll try to bring something to a close when it’s ready to be launched into a new fruitfulness. I’ll comfort when I should exhort.
The Christian life is a faith-walk and faith only lives against the backdrop of human need and impaired spiritual vision. Its fibers strengthen while God’s child waits for Him to come according the promise associated with His name. While I’m in the ‘not yet’, I know that My Redeemer liveth. Faith is the certainty that God will . . . when the time is right.
For each of us in the ‘not yet’, plant Your promises deep in our hearts and water the seeds with Your grace. In Jesus’ name, Amen