Wednesday, January 9, 2013

God's Timing #1 - Becoming Like Jesus

Timing is everything. From when you mention something to your wife, your boss, or your best friend, timing plays an important role in the outcome of your message. I think I have learned that the hard way many times. Prayer, too, can be a matter of timing. Not understanding God’s timing regarding a matter we are praying about can lead to spiritual disappointment and missed opportunities.

Sometimes when I pray for something I have a hard time wondering if God is saying not to do it, never to do it, or don’t do it now. We had a meeting the other day about our involvement with the Marose church in Haiti. We want to continue our partnership with Marose but the question is, “What does that look like this year?” We have no doubt that we are to help and support this church. We can either physically go there, send financial support to get the Medical Clinic off the ground and running, or do both. We have decided to continue to pray and see what the Lord is leading us to do in the next few weeks. Would you pray with us as we pray for the Lord to show us what would be most beneficial to this church?

Whatever the outcome is I know that it will be good because we are desperately wanting to know what God wants us to do. The ultimate goal for all involved is that the Lord be glorified and that somehow we all grow more to be like Jesus. The Bible declares that from before the creation of the world, God intended us to be “conformed to the likeness of His Son” (Romans 8:29). This is the spiritual yardstick by which we can measure our progress in becoming more like Jesus. To be more like Jesus is not about memorizing more Scripture (although that would not hurt). It’s not about being in a visible leadership role either. It is about having His character and His spiritual poise. No matter what happened, the Lord knew what to say and when to say it. He also knew when to be silent. He always had perfect timing and when to withdraw from the crowds for a time of rest or prayer. Jesus’ sense of what the moment required was flawless. That is what spiritual maturity in Christ is all about.

Some things should never be done, while others must always be observed. Some things should be done some of the time and other times it would be inappropriate because the Lord doesn’t want it done now. Understanding the timing of the Lord will help us avoid painful outcomes and guide us in knowing His timing.

Instead of writing a book in this email devotional, I am going to take the next several weeks to break this down through the Scripture to understand it more. Exodus 14:10-16 will be the verse we begin to unfold the timing of the Lord. Until then, let’s run with the verse we learned at Upward Basketball practice last night.

“Everyone should be quick to listen. But they should be slow to speak. They should be slow to get angry.”            James 1:19b (NIrV)

Great things are happening at the church. The Spirit of the Lord is moving. This Sunday we will dedicate a few of our precious babies and continue in our series, “Rich Toward God.”

Let’s grow together and be more like Jesus…

Joy in Jesus!

Pastor Mike

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