December 15, 2020
As we approach Christmas, I am reminded of the Scripture, “But when the time was right, God sent his Son, and a woman gave birth to him. His Son obeyed the Law, so he could set us free from the Law, and we could become God’s children.” Galatians 4:4-5 CEV
God had been telling the world for centuries that He was going to send a Savior. But God waited thousands of years for just the right time to send His Son. Why? Why was that necessary? Why didn’t God just send Him sooner? His people were crying and hurting and wanting Him.
Why didn’t God send Him sooner? God had His own timetable: His perfect timetable for His ultimate purpose for Christmas.
What was happening that likely made this a perfect time? Well, Rome “owned” the world and it was at peace. There were basically no more territories to conquer, so what do you do with this massive army? You have them build roads to all the areas you have conquered. This massive network of roads would allow the gospel, the good news, to spread more quickly.
The Greek civilization provided a commonly understood language and shared culture. The Jews retained a native Hebrew tongue called Aramaic, yet they used Koine (common) Greek in dealing with outsiders. This was the language in which the New Testament was written. This language was so uniformly understood across the land that the concepts of the gospel could be explained and fine distinctions of thought accurately understood. I am sure there are many things that made this time perfect that we don’t even begin to understand, but the things we do know show us that God was working a plan.
For many of us, in 2020 there are things we had hoped and prayed would happen that just didn’t. I know this is true personally as well as here at NewPointe. There are too many things for me to mention that have not happened yet that I thought for sure would in 2020, both personally and professionally. But this I know: God has a timetable. And He doesn’t lay it all out to us in advance.
Solomon writes, “God has given them a desire to know the future. He does everything just right and on time, but people can never completely understand what he is doing.” Ecclesiastes 3:11 NCV. I can see how accurate Solomon is.
God didn’t tell Israel exactly when Jesus would come, but the Bible says Jesus came at just the right time. You and I like to know exactly what’s next in our lives, but that’s not how God works. God rarely lays everything out before us. Why?
Ultimately, the reason is that God wants you and me to learn to trust Him. He knows what is best for us. He wants you and me to progressively trust Him, more today than we did a day ago or a year ago. He wants us to be able to say with confidence, “This last year has been filled with many things that didn’t happen, and I have been disappointed. But the delay doesn’t mean it won’t happen.”
We can state with full confidence as we grow: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV
Many times we think we know what is best for us. We know what we want or need, why we want or need it, and the timing in which we believe it needs to happen. But the truth of the matter is, WE DON’T.
God isn’t bound by time. He can be in the past, present, and future at the same time. Our view of time is bound by life on earth, which rotates every 24 hours and travels around the sun every 365 days. God is completely above that, so he can operate in perfect time. As an elderly woman who was a neighbor of mine when I lived in Akron used to say, “God is never early and never late; He is always on time.” I have found that to be totally true.
So what have you been fretting and worrying about because it hasn’t happened yet? What is it that is disappointing you, stealing your joy, and robbing you of peace?
Here’s the commandment and the direction and the promise: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7