Timing is such an important element in life…. whether in the stock market, your career, family decisions, love and war, prayer, etc. As they say, “the right answer at the wrong time is the wrong answer, or better three hours too soon than a minute too late….”
God always has perfect timing. ”When the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law.”(Gal. 4:4) There was the perfect timing for the incarnation…for Jesus being born into this tortured world.
God’s timing often doesn’t seem perfect to us. We can look at the incarnation and think, “it seems like the worst of time…Israel under the yoke of the Romans…a terrible time for the Lord to be born. Yet, it was the right time.
There’s a perfect timing to all of God’s actions, including his response to our prayers. Jesus calls us to “ask and seek and knock” and we will receive an answer. We will receive a good answer, the answer that a father gives to his son, not a “stone for a loaf of bread, or a snake for a fish”. Your heavenly father will give you good gifts. (Mt. 7:7-12) This good gift will be given at the right time.
It can seem that God’s good gift, not given right away, is not being given. God forgot our request, or He said NO. Trust is needed to believe that God is going to give our perfect gift in his perfect time. We must trust that our loving father always has our best interest in mind.
Some people seem to be tested in regards to this trust more than others. God made incredible promises to the people of Israel… to become a great nation, blessed with a land flowing with milk and honey, victory over their enemies, a savior to deliver them…. yet, they were slaves in Egypt for 400 years. They had to be tempted to think “where is God and his promises”. But then we read that God heard their cry and sent a deliverer. The exodus was magnificent…God’s power thru Moses, the Red Sea, the Promised Land… wow, God came through in spades. But, it took 400 years…. wow, 400 years.
Yet, we see other situations where the Lord hears prayers instantaneously. Once the Exodus began, the miracles seemed to come left and right. In Jesus’s time, the curing of lepers, the feeding of the thousands, raising of Lazarus from the dead happened in moments. Hmmmmm, so what’s the answer to these puzzling situations.
Well, I think we are being called to trust in God and in his love for us. God is our father and loves us and has our best interest in mind. With that in mind, he will answer our requests in his perfect way and in his perfect timing. Sometimes it means an instantaneous answer; other times it means in 3 days, 3 months, 3 years. We are called to trust God. Period.
We have wonderful examples of trusting God thru the entire Bible, from Abraham to the apostles to the saints thru the ages. When we don’t see quick answers to our prayers, let us trust that the Lord will hear our prayers in his perfect time. He loves us and will never be too early or too late. And that is very good news.