As I am doing some much needed reflecting during this last day of January, it occurs to me that time has been an important issue throughout my entire life. And I don’t just mean my artful and highly skilled procrastination. Living with a chronic illness, the expectation that I didn’t have a lot of time was imposed upon me from a young age. Then came my uncertainty about whether I should or should not do certain things because it might not be worthwhile considering that I might not have long to live. As I grew older those concerns gave way to thoughts about not being prepared to live as long as I might. Now, most recently, the urge to do everything now has taken over. These thoughts are in no way unique to people who live with a chronic illness. It simply seems that time has wanted to let me know how important it is in my life. God, on the other hand, has been trying to tell me that He is greater than time.
For the past two years or so God has been teaching me to wait on His timing. It has been a struggle. But God isn’t finished with me yet. Towards the end of 2018 I began to plan my annual New Year blog post. I wasn’t particularly inspired and didn’t know what I wanted to share. But I still had a plan and was going to publish something. Then I started to feel ill. But I still had a plan. And God had other plans. By the time December 31st rolled around I was having a full-blown sickle cell crisis. My tradition of attending Old Year’s Night/New Year’s Eve service at my Church was replaced by watching on Facebook. By the time January 1st had come to greet us I knew that my first outing of the year was going to be the emergency room. And it was. However, I was discharged, which left me no choice but to return on January 2nd. Then I was discharged again and spent the following three days sleeping. Not exactly the way I planned to spend the start of the year. But clearly God allowed it so who was I going to fight about this change in plans?
Turns out God was right. Who would have thought? After those three days of forced rest I continued to steadily recover. Now? Now I feel better than ever. Not to mention that the rest of the month turned out to be extremely productive. If I had started the year as I planned, who knows what I would have been able to accomplish or how I would be feeling right now. My New Year’s blog post is no exception. January 31st is admittedly late for a New Year message. But the message itself, like everything else this month, has been improved by God’s timing. In terms of putting one’s priorities in order it doesn’t get easier or more clear than that.
Today, as I sit here being productive and feeling great, I can’t deny that God’s timing is best. And that I must learn to be patient. And thankful. Especially for His patience with me. So that will be my focus this year; learning how to discern God’s will and, more importantly, be patient as I wait on His divine timing.
What about you, dear reader? How has the start of your 2019 been so far? More importantly, what do you see in store for the rest of your year? Whatever that may be, let’s be prepared for whenever God says it is time.
You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than He who is in the world.
1 John 4:4 (NKJV)