Love is Patient
God is love
It's late and I have so much energy and I haven't written in a couple of weeks and really want to encourage someone. I'm not sure who this may be for but I feel it's for someone.
Tonight, I was at the connect group my house mates host and I was talking with a new friend I made there. She was sharing her story and mentioned how she realized that God was patiently waiting for her to step out and trust Him in an endeavor. Part of what she said really struck me. She said God was patiently waiting for her. God is so patient with us, guys. And that's so beautiful to me. I know I have spoken on how sometimes God will move only after we've taken that step of faith forward and I was reminded of this fact through my friend's words. The Lord is so patient with us. He knows where we are going and what He has destined for us yet He is not in a rush for us to get there. Sometimes, we are the ones in a rush and we tackle too many things at once and get burned out. Or sometimes we just don't know what to do and feel so rushed and "pressured to be" [successful, prosperous, "together", married, in a relationship, a parent, etc.] that we either try and make things happen on our own-- I'm reminded of the account in Genesis 16 where Sarai gave her maid Hagar to her husband Abraham because she herself could not bear children. Had Sarai waited, she would have avoided a lot of emotional upset, as we discover in chapter 18 that the Lord promises a child to her-- or get paralyzed and do nothing but wait for something to happen.
I'm sure we can all relate to one, if not both, of those examples. I have been one to feel so frustrated with where I was in life and what I thought I should be doing that I just didn't do much because I didn't know what would be the right or wrong step. So I just stayed still for fear of making a mistake. Ahh, perfectionism, love it. We cannot let the fear of making a mistake prevent us from moving forward in what we think is the leading of the Lord. The Bible encourages us to "fear not because I am with you" in Isaiah*. God tells us that "whether we turn to the left or the right, we will hear a voice behind us saying, 'this is the way, walk in it.' "* I believe that scripture to mean that even if we take a misstep, God's Spirit is right there with us and He will continue to guide us in the right path. He will redirect us and get us back on track.
I'm imagining helping a child ride a bike down a path. If they get of course, I'm not just going to let them keep going the wrong way, nor will I demean them for making that wrong turn. I'm going to tell them, "hey, this way". That's what God does with us. He is not unaware of our being prone to "fall" and He is patient and loving with us when we do. When I say "fall" in this case, I don't necessarily mean sin. I mean when we do our best and follow what we think is His leading. I believe He honors our faith and trust in Him and He guides us faithfully to where we should be. He continues to tell us, "go this way", "go that way". We just have to listen and obey.
Therefore, the Lord waits [expectantly] and longs to be gracious to you,
and therefore, He waits on high to have compassion on you.
For the Lord is a God of justice;
Blessed (happy, fortunate) are all those who long for Him [since He will never fail them].
This scripture is also found in Isaiah and was taken from the Amplified Bible, whose translation I absolutely love. The Lord longs to be gracious to us. To me. To you. He is waiting to what? To hurt us and punish us from Heaven? No. He is waiting to have compassion on us. Why? Because we deserve it? Because of all of our striving to be perfect and "a good person/Christian"? No. Because He is a God of justice. His kindness towards us, His patience and steadfast love is all based in His own character. It's not based on our anything. God's love for us is unconditional and we can not do a thing to earn it. Nor can we do anything to lose it. He loves like this because He is love. Love is Who God is. It is His make up. So when we (I) fail at "being perfect" or having it all together or even loving others the way we know He would want us, we don't need to worry that His love for us has run out. God is love and His love for us does not run dry.
Wow. When I first started on this post, it was my intention to write a quick, little pick-me-up, something nice and encouraging. I wasn't planning on having a lengthy post about the Love of God but more so on how patient He is with us in times of our own slowness. To tell you all the truth, I didn't have any of this planned. I didn't know what scriptures I'd be referencing and I didn't have notes that I took from a message on Sunday, as I sometimes do with my God-themed posts. I was just awake with PMDD insom and I really wanted to write something encouraging. I was laying down and started reflecting on the convo I had earlier and I felt the Lord just telling me to write. I didn't even know what I was going to say but I just started writing. I was obedient. And God did the rest. As I typed, the words flowed and scriptures came to mind. I have been doing a study on hearing the voice of the Lord and knowing that I did tonight and was obedient to it feels amazing.
I hope this doesn't sound pretentious but I have been blessed in writing this post for whomever needed it. I'm not saying this to brag on my writing skills (because what skills I do have come from God), I say this because what I wrote was for me too. Those scriptures in Isaiah are powerful and I don't even remember ever reading the one in chapter 30. I'm going to go back and study that during my devotional time because there is so much freedom and peace in that. I am so blessed and encouraged tonight (this morning? lol) and am grateful to have this blog. And I'm glad something great came from this insomnia and energy at what is now 3:00 am!
Genesis 16 & 18
Isaiah 41:10 & 30:18-21