“Martha then said to Jesus, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.” John 11:21 NASB
In the spring of 2019 we made the commitment with several other families to leave Tennessee and move to the L.A. area to start a church. In the summer of 2019, we stood on the stage at our church with those same families and announced to our church family that we were leaving. They celebrated for us. They prayed for us and for the church we were going to plant. In the next couple of weeks, those same families packed up their belongings and moved out west. Meanwhile, our family was still in Tennessee. We had not yet secured jobs in California or a place to stay once we landed there.
As the Sundays went by and we still had not left, people began to ask about our departure. Week after week we would hear, “It’s all in God’s timing”. Either we would say it, or, someone would try to comfort us with the phrase. We could say, “it’s all in God’s timing”, because we have seen God come through before in our lives and in the lives of others. We were questioned each week about when we were going to move and we didn’t have an answer. We saw our friends in California living out the calling we believed we were to be a part of and wondered if we had misunderstood the call to join them. We’ve seen God move for us before but, as the weeks went by, disappointment and doubt began to creep in. We’ve seen His timing be swift and also delayed. In the meantime, we waited, and we prayed “In His timing”.
We have stories like this one with Lazarus being raised from the dead to remind us of the power of Jesus. However, we tend to overlook the feelings of despair that Mary and Martha were feeling. They didn’t realize they were in a period of waiting for Lazarus to be raised. They only knew at that moment that what they had asked of God had not been received. They waited. They wept. They watched their prayers go unanswered. They wanted their brother to be healed and yet, he died and was buried.
“It’s all in God’s timing” is meant to be comforting but it’s not always. Mary and Martha had to watch their prayer request die, “In God’s timing”, so that the greater response could be revealed. In their timing, Lazarus recovering from the sickness would have been a good blessing. But, in God’s timing, Lazarus being raised from the dead was the greater blessing and God received more glory for it. Lazarus was raised from the dead after being dead for four days. After months of waiting, weeping, and watching our prayers go unanswered, in God’s timing, we moved to California in February of 2020.
What’s next for us? What’s next for you? Whatever it is, I can assure you it will be done, in God’s timing. So, let’s stay the course even when the timing doesn’t seem to line up with our goals.
Be blessed. Love Y’all.