Saturday, August 27, 2011

God's Perfect Timing

I've been thinking about these words a lot lately. A lot. And trying to figure out a way to articulate WHY it is that I don't agree with how most people define them. "God's perfect timing," to me, does not mean that your prayers are answered when God feels the timing is perfect.

To me, as has been evidenced in my life, "God's perfect timing," has rather been about the timing of each cross we carry. For those who suffer the cross of childlessness, God knows already when and how (and if) we will be delivered from that cross. For Jane and Mike, it may be 3 years. For Sally and Tom, it may be 8 years. For Cassie and Frank, it may be never. And for Rachel and Chris, it may be 4 months. God is not waiting up in Heaven for us to discover the magic combination of prayers, understanding, and clarity in our cross before granting us the blessing of children. Nor is He waiting until we are at the exact right time of our lives (i.e, "No, they should not get pregnant this year, because they will buy a house this year and it will be too much stress for them. I will wait until NEXT year to give them a child, because then THAT will be perfect timing!")

Call me cynical, but I really don't think God works like that. I know many (who have received their blessings) will disagree.

Instead, I think God already knows in advance what the exact outcome of our cross will be - and the time we have been allotted by God to make something fruitful and beautiful out of our cross is REALLY what His perfect timing is all about.

None of us know when our time will be "up." We can be delivered of our cross at any moment. But we also may be asked to carry it for a lifetime. No matter what the end result, our focus should not be about that future moment which may or may not exist, but on how to use the moments right in front of us, here and now. Despair, complaining, whining, becoming bitter, and anger are not the ways to utilize God's perfect timing.

For those who still carry the cross of childlessness, this post is for you. I feel your pain, particularly lately, as we watch, read, and follow our friends who have been given their blessings. Try to look at it as YOUR blessing - that you have been given more time... more time to grow in love with God, to finally reach a place where you truly understand that the MIRACLE of life is not outside of you, in a child God entrusts to your care. It is, instead, the miracle of your heart being opened to God's will and knowing that Christ loves you SO MUCH He is giving you this time to discover things you may have never discovered without this time.

I am so thankful for the miracle that has come from my childlessness, and I pray the miracles continue to pour forth for me and for all of you!

Allow yourself to feel the pain, allow yourself to listen to God in that pain - He will guide you wherever He wants you to be now.

Because... His perfect timing for discovering His love is ALWAYS NOW.

30 comments:

E said...

Amen. :)

Little JoAnn said...

Humbled again by your soul and what appears to be infinite wisdom...

A Martha trying to be Mary said...

Such a beautiful and wise post. TCIE you are always in my prayers

Lauren @ Magnify the Lord with Me said...

This is such a beautiful post, TCIE!!! " God is not waiting up in Heaven for us to discover the magic combination of prayers, understanding, and clarity in our cross before granting us the blessing of children. Nor is He waiting until we are at the exact right time of our lives " YES YES and YES!!!!! I don't think that's cynical- I think that's hopeful and optimistic! It's reality! To think God is waiting for the "right" combination is cynical...and disturbing.

I think you're so right. God knows when our cross will be lifted- and is aching to give us all sorts of fruit and blessings as we carry our cross. He wants to wipe our face, help us with our load, and console us. He wants to resurrect our crosses and that is SO beautiful!

Beautiful beautiful post!!!

ALIVEINHOPE said...

Thank you, TCIE, for this post. I needed to hear this...

JellyBelly said...

Wow wow wow!!! What a great post!!!

Now just to apply this train of thought to my impatient life!

Perfect Power in Weakness said...

I completely agree with you. Thanks for your beautiful post!

matchingmoonheads said...

umm, i think this past month is a perfect example of how it is impossible to 'earn' a baby, for me at least. i won't go into all the details for the sake of your comment box, but it was a bad, bad month. people have been saying this to me and i don't know how to respond...because i see God's timing more like how you describe it. i had a friend wait three years for a child and when she finally got pregnant, a few months later she found out her husband would have to do a year remote tour just one month after the baby was born. 'God's perfect timing' or one cross to the next? Its so simplistic to say 'oh, this is why i got pregnant and now it all makes sense'...just our attempts to try to figure it all out. i think you're right though, its about living in the now. because that is all we have.

and i think its funny you said you had a feeling about me...i was pretty convinced that i would be saying subfertility for the rest of my life.

Hebrews 11:1 said...

This is my favorite post of all time, and you are the most amazing person I know.

Mrs. Mike said...

Amen! I wholeheartedly agree.

Be Not Afraid said...

Excellent post. Something definitely to meditate on.

prayerfuljourney said...

I have to agree with the other commentors...this was a great post. I do believe in God's plan and you are right...it's not about timing. Timing is a human term not God's. I get that. We base our lives on time..don't we? So I guess it's easy to assume God is about time..and He is not. I need to remember this myself. As I live my life...I just pray I am allowing God to guide me and make me who HE wants me to be. Thanks for the profound and thoughtful post!

Lianna said...

Thank you for this post! Our will is not always in tune with God's will. I have come to that realization, and just want to live in His perfect will..Even if that means not ultimately getting what I want. Perhaps for some people their desire is God's will, and there is a "perfect timing," but this is not always so.

Patiently Waiting...... said...

So true! It is so important for us to embrace these "childless" years but it can be so hard. We have been given more time.....and I know it has only strengthened my relationship with Him. You remain in my prayers!

silverbeetle said...

His perfect timing for discovering His love is ALWAYS NOW. Wow. What a gift, that statement!

Thank you for another thought provoking and inspiring post. It isn't always easy being thankful for our sub / IF... but we are ok, right now, BECAUSE of His great love for us.

the misfit said...

As usual, you have incredible spiritual insight. I can't claim that this cross has brought me closer to God - I know it's brought me much further away. And (as I've said before), while I'm sure in some way or another that's all my fault, I didn't want that and I can't see the way back. No doubt there is a reason for all of that, too.

But I can sign onto one sentiment wholeheartedly (and this one is typical) - it makes no sense for people who say, "It's wrong to use contraception, to decide that it's more important to save for a down payment and buy a second SUV than it is to be open to life whenever that happens," then to say, "Oh, see, God must be waiting until you have your student loan debt paid down." Obviously there's a difference between being open to life and not, but God either cares primarily about personal finances and earthly logistics or He doesn't - it's not like He's blase about finance for fertiles and OBSESSED with the bank balances of infertiles. I know some people must think this comment is helpful, but as unhelpful as I find it for people to insult my intelligence, I find it MUCH MORE unhelpful that people try to give me "hopeful comments" about a God Who apparently, in their view, is not consistent or rational or even particularly holy - He's just the guy who gives them the things they want, and gives them an excuse not to have to feel too bad for me. That's a pretty poor excuse for a religion, IMHO, and I don't really want reassurances from or about a God like that.

Sigh. Your post is so uplifting, too...sorry.

callmemama said...

Yes, we all know there's nothing you can do to "earn" a baby, and I always despised people suggesting that they were able to get pregnant due to their finally doing x,y and z...
Good post - gave me lots to think about, as usual :).

PlayandPray said...

Thank you for this. Very insightful words and they give me a lot to think about.

Complicated Life said...

This is perfect. Beautifully and truthfully stated.

Sarah said...

Thank you for this post. Amazing. And I needed to read it tonight. And "God is not waiting up in Heaven for us to discover the magic combination of prayers, understanding, and clarity in our cross before granting us the blessing of children." Yes, yes, thank you!

God Alone Suffices said...

Thank you for this post, TCIE! My "spiritual mother", who thinks she had children too early, tells me things like this all the time. "Well, maybe God's waiting until you have a bigger apartment." Really? lol Maybe next time I'll refer her to this post! Thanks again!

Holly Rutchik said...

Once again you are so, so wise! I agree. I struggle with looking at my crosses as a way to the Lord.
Thank you, I needed it today.

"His Perfect Timing" said...

Wow! Again, something I didn't even think about until now. :) You have great insight and help me *so much* in changing my perspective and attitude towards my IF!

The Skirts said...

Oh, I love this. So true, I think. More than anything, I do not want get to the end of my life and see only countless missed opportunities to love God. You have reminded me again that this time (as long as it lasts) is precious and worthy. Thank you!

Amazing Life said...

Oh TCIE!!! Beautiful post and reminder. God is revealing so much in your spirit, as always you are a light to so many.

Lavished with Lemons said...

Thank you so much for this post. Beautiful.

mrsblondies said...

Beautiful post. I love the insight of both you and the previous commenters. I definitely didn't earn K, and MMH is right about moving from one cross to the next.

Nicole C said...

You're a saint. Beautiful words!

Danya @ He Adopted Me First said...

I agree wholeheartedly with you TCIE. I think too often we can wish our lives away - even if we do have children. Sometimes we wait for "this phase" to end or "that phase" to begin without really appreciating where we are and what God wants us to discover in these moments.
I am convinced that we all have crosses to bear. Once I was in a bible study and I began to chuckle when I really looked at our group of ladies. One was in a wheelchair, one had a special needs son, one worried about her sister, another had wayward children, I had IF, an older one was thinking about her death... We all had our own troubles and sought solace in one another and scripture. It was all so beautiful in a painful way.
Jesus comes for the sick, the "well" have no need of Him.

Rebecca said...

I have been looking for the right way to say how much this post has meant to me. I can't find it and it's now a week later, so I'm just here to say thank-you for writing this. For reminding me that there isn't some 'perfect answer' that I have to figure out before God will give us a baby.

I've saved this post and read it over and over again, each time feeling better than when I started. Thank-you.