Dealing With Delay
We all face delays from time to time and for most of us it isn’t pleasant. My whole life I have faced seasons of what seemed like it was one delay after another only to look back and scratch my head and wander what was that all about. In view of the recent elections, especially here in my home state of Georgia I have pondered this alot. I knew in the second day or so that, at least in Georgia it was just a delay of the inevitable for one party. I remember a week later I was beginning to really get angry.
But, alas I remembered what I felt like the Lord was telling me that it was part of the process, and that yes, we needed to pray and pray hard, but it was all going to pan out. Finally, that is exactly what happened as we watched legal wrangling, and more attempts to try and change state law after an election, and postponing what was eventually going to take place.
Regardless of what side one was on in that election, it was all a process that after awhile I think most were just glad to move on. I want us all to look at delays we have faced in our lives. Delays for a major breakthrough, someone’s healing, financial favor, or maybe a big celebration. Often in dealing with a delay we forget that there are many factors involved. We do all we can and then we wait on God, or at least we are supposed to wait.
Delays come in many forms. Sometimes, as in the Georgia elections we have some indication that there might be a delay. We come to a deadline and whatever was supposed to happen never transpired. Then more deadlines are set only to see them pass, and then we begin to become distraught and feel defeated, until atlast we just give up. Sometimes it may be a test from God, others may be demonic warfare, and others just human circumstances, and yet God may be just protecting us and saying not this way.
Regardless of the reasons, we face delay, but eventually the situation is worked out one way or another. In the case of Jesus returning it has been over two-thousand years and yet He has not yet returned. In the first generation after Jesus’ ascension to heaven the early church began to think He wasn’t coming back and began to live so. No one lived with that urgency and they began to become lax in their living.
Jesus told us to be ever watchful for we don’t know the hour He will return. He gave us some signs so we would know the season but not the exact hour. Watching requires us to be on the alert, just as many were alert waiting to see an end in the election certification. Is it possible that Jesus’ return can be delayed? We pray to God the Father for mercy and grace, and for a revival and for the last Harvest. God pours out His Spirit, and we experience revival, the gospel is preached, miracles and signs and wonders occur. We see more signs pointing to His return but yet He delays. Why?
There are many reasons why Jesus delays in returning, but the main reason is because of what He said in Matthew 24:14, where we read, “And this gospel of the kingdom shall preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” You see, until the gospel of the Kingdom is preached in all nations, as a witness, He will not come back. How will we know when the gospel of the Kingdom has been preached in all of the world as a testimony? Jesus will return!
Secondly, He told the people of Jerusalem in Matthew 23:37-30, “ you will not see Me until you say ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.’” That hasn’t happened either. Despite all of these delays they are only perceived delays. A delay requires a change in the conditions of the original requirements for meeting a deadline. Not preaching the full gospel of the kingdom in the whole world is not really a delay it is simply a requirement that must be met.
But, I adjure you not grow weary or lose hope because it will happen and will happen in a mighty way. Do not lose hope because He will fulfill what He promised. The devil is and will continue an all out assault on the saints to “wear them out” (Daniel 7:25) but they will persevere, until Jesus finally returns. It is not really a delay. We pray often for Jesus to come quickly. He’s ready but we need to be diligent to present the full gospel to all nations.
I exhort you to not lose hope in daily life in daily situations and keep focused on Jesus and His kingdom. When something seems to be delayed asked God what is going on. Don’t get apprehensive, grow weary. Keep your peace and joy for that is our strength.