“Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.” – Psalm 27:14
We will be moving back to Texas soon, which got me thinking about the last time we moved recently. Our lives have been a wild ride anyway, but then an opportunity came up near New York and we couldn’t say no. It is always exciting for us to move and try a new adventure. The kids get to be the new kids in school and my wife and I get to pick out houses. Of course, moving is not all it’s cracked up to be, especially moving over a day’s journey away from our previous home back there in the Lone Star State. There’s the long car ride, various smells from the back seat, and eating fast food so often that you want to just explode and get it over with. Then, there was the house complications. We thought we had the perfect house a few times, but each time was plagued by problem after problem. Over a month later, after paying through the nose for a hotel all of that time, we finally got into a house that was the best one that we had found yet. God is great every day, isn’t He? Well, I had my doubts now and then during that horrific process, but He came through. He ALWAYS comes through. So why did I doubt?
While we are in the moment of strife and problems, it’s hard to keep our eyes focused on Jesus. I remind you of a story out in Matthew chapter 14 where Peter is called by Jesus to walk to Him on the water. Because Jesus asked Peter to do it, Peter got out of the boat he was in and started walking across the sea to get to Jesus. He was doing fine for a while, until Peter took his eyes off of Jesus on the other side. When Peter started looking at and being concerned with the huge waves in the ocean, Peter couldn’t do it anymore and started to sink. But just before Peter went under, Jesus grasped his hand and pulled him safely up and away from the water.
The moral of the story is to keep your eyes on Jesus Christ. During my house hunting experience, I was so overcome with the stress that I felt like I was drowning. My main problem was that I was more focused on my situation than I was on Jesus. I shouldn’t have been talking about how big my problems were, I should have told my problems how big my God is.
Imagine that you can only keep one thing in sight at a time. You can either see your circumstances or you can see your God, but not both. So which one would you pick? This world and these problems are only temporary. It’s not even a blip on the radar screen of time and eternity. No matter how bad things get, realize that God is still on the throne. Like my mom said to me, “I’ve read the back of the book and we win in the end.” I preach the same thing, but unfortunately just like my mom who worried all the time, it’s easy to tell someone to keep their head up during trials, but it’s a whole different thing to practice what you preach. Honestly, if I want to do some confessing right now, I got overwhelmed during this move experience. I was grouchy (or at least grouchier than normal) and started to let cuss words slip even. I wasn’t exactly a joy to be around to say the least. To cool off, I would take walks with my dog and talk with God, but I would be in such an angry frame of mind that I wasn’t open to listening to Him. I just wanted to vent my own frustrations, and just like the good Father that He is, God stayed there with me and just listened. He always does, no matter what we have to say to Him. God walked with me and let me be the fussy little child that I am sometimes, but if I only would have taken a moment to listen, I would have heard Him say, “You didn’t get this house because I have something better. You just need to be patient with My plans. Trust Me, I love you and I want the best for you.”
Just like Peter and the lake, Jesus gave Peter the power to walk on the water as long as Peter kept his eyes and mind fixed on Jesus. God will never call you to do something without giving you the power to do it. God called myself and my family to move across the country and we accepted, but when the storms of life came, I let myself sink rather than keeping my faith firm.
I have this dream (or maybe a nightmare) that has me up in Heaven on my first day there. Jesus is walking with me and showing me all of these wonderful pictures. It turns out that He is showing me all of the great things that I could have experienced during my life had I only waited on His plans to come to pass. But instead, I pushed through for the things that I wanted so bad at the time, not knowing that Christ had something greater for me than I ever could have imagined.
I never want that dream to be a reality. I don’t want to miss out on what Jesus has planned for my life all because I was too impatient. I want them all and I want the same for you, too, as my brother or sister in Christ. So I say please, look at this not so much as a passive guide as it is a stern warning. You are meant for greatness and as a child of God, you have royal blood flowing in your veins. The Bible says we are to wait on the Lord and that’s exactly what we need to do. God loves us so much that He will let us screw up our lives if that is truly our wish. He’s not going to force blessings upon us. We can push something to happen in our lives or we can allow God to work His mighty works. It’s our choice.
Do not focus on your circumstances more than you focus on Jesus.
God’s blessings to you.