It is an unbelievably beautiful day here in RVA. I hope you are enjoying your day and getting a productive start to your week. I'm just home from a weekend of events in Detroit. While I was in the D, I played in a charity basketball tournament raising over $1,100 for kids in the city. I also played a concert while I was in town.
While I was riding around Detroit I saw a bunch of those ambulance chasing attorney ads on billoards all around town. Apparently, Detroit has a lot of car accidents! I'm positive that I didn't go 5 miles on the freeway without seeing one of those things. They were everywhere.
Seeing those ads on the freeway got me to thinking about funny lawyer and financing commercials that we see here in VA. The first one that came to mind was J.G. Wentworth. I've always found those commercials to be hilarious "Its my money and I want it NOW!" I'm pretty sure everybody has seen one of those commercials.
As funny as it is, that J.G. Wentworth ad is a brilliant appeal to our natural bent toward impatience. In the Bible, Jesus' parable of the Prodigal Son reminds me of this ad. The youngest son of a very wealthy man decided he didn't want to wait for his inheritance. He wanted it all and he wanted it immediately. It was his inheritance and he wanted it now! He had no regard for his father's timing. He wanted what he wanted when he wanted it.
I know I can relate to Mr. Prodigal's sense of immediacy. In truth, I think most of us are terribly impatient - especially when it comes to the things of God. We want blessings to show us immediately. We have no regard for God's processes or his timing. So many times we only care about our requests or God's promises. We care nothing of his ways!
As it turns out, the prodigal kid that Jesus spoke of wasn't at all ready for inheritance he'd been given. He blew it all, recklessly spending his money turning up (that's a slang colloquialism for partying, lol). Sure, his father would later show mercy and welcome him home but the prodigal son's inheritance was spent! There was no getting that part back.
I'm sure the prodigal kid's father knew what his son would do with the inheritance he had for him. I'm also sure there was an appointed time for him to bequeath that inheritance to his son. The prodigal son didn't have any regard for his father's wisdom and in the all his disregard for his father's wise timing cost him the inheritance he wanted so badly.
There is a sobering lesson of trust in this story. We can learn from Mr. Prodigal. We do know that every promise of God is "yes and amen." We also know that God has promised to affirmatively answer every prayer we pray according to his will. However, patience and trust in his timing are critical. We must learn that he has his reasons for delaying. We must trust that his delays always result in dual purpose: his glory and our good!
So, as we set out into the week with our lists of things we are praying about, let us us seek the Lord for increased grace that manifests as trust and patience in his processes and timing. Let's pray for greater revelations of who God is as we count on him to work with, through and for us in those spaces where we are praying. Let's pray that he will quiet that self centered voice that all too often shouts out "it's my blessing and I want it now!"
Questions for the week
- What is patience?
- Can I think of times when I've been impatient with God and wound up wrecking a blessing?
- Do I take pleasure in seeing God work or just getting my way?
- Do I trust God's processes as much as I trust his results?