Perfect Timing

Lent is a time of waiting and preparing.  Reminiscent of the forty days Jesus spent in the desert preparing for Holy Week and His crucifiction, it allows us time consider things in our lives as we patiently wait for Easter.

How patient of a person are you?  Are you able to sit and let things happen in their own time?  Perhaps you are more impatient and would rather nudge things along?  My mother takes delight in sharing that I was “born 25 days early and have kept up that pace ever since.”  Obviously, she doesn’t think I am a patient waiter.

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Scripture tells us to “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him…” (Psalm 37:7).  Nothing in that says to hurry Him along.  In Psalm 130:5 it says “I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.”  All throughout the Bible we are instructed to wait on God.  Assurances are given that His timing and His ways are far better than our own.  Do we listen and wait?   I try, but. . .

Have you ever tried to rush things?  You wanted something so much that you just couldn’t wait?  Maybe you took something out of the oven before it was fully baked and instead of experiencing a perfect bite it was awful.  I had a friend whose son took his driver’s test the first day he was able but didn’t study.  It wasn’t the right time, and yes, he failed.

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For four years I have been praying for someone who is troubled.  Physical issues are now manifesting in emotional ways.  Depression and anxiety have not just set in but rooted themselves.  I haven’t given up.  The Bible says to “pray without ceasing” and so I am.  I have to catch myself because I want to give God some suggestions on how to get this done.  He doesn’t need that.

So I pray and wait until it is His time, completely giving my loved one over to the Creator. When it is His timing then things will change.  In the meantime, God is here.  Always here.

Lent is a time of preparing my heart and mind for the miracle of Easter.  It is a time of waiting for what is to come and denying ourselves luxuries like Jesus did in the desert.  This is a time for drawing near to God and waiting.  Take comfort in knowing that no matter what you are waiting for when it is God’s time for it to happen, it will.  Until then, keep praying.

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Ash Wednesday Thoughts

It is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent, a time of reflection and preparation.  Just as Jesus took forty days to do that in the dessert, Lent gives us those days to spend before Easter Resurrection Sunday preparing our hearts, minds, and souls.

After researching it, I found what I already knew to be true.  There is no mention of Ash Wednesday or Lent in the Bible.  We are not commanded to observe either.  However, we are to observe communion.  Taking bread and wine/juice in remembrance of Christ’s body and blood that was beaten and shed for our salvation.

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What love He had to do that!  Unfathomable, uneverlasting, pure love.  Mind-blowing love.  I can read about it and see movies, but I am certain it was much worse that I can ever imagine.  What about you?

Thinking about Ash Wednesday brings me full circle to creation.  Reading the account again in Genesis, I am awed at God’s power to mold and shape man in His own image and then breathe life into him.  Do you feel that way, too?  Think about it.  We are made from dirt, but after Almighty God fills us with His breath then we come alive!  Miraculous.

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“And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.”   Genesis 2:7  Genesis 3:19 says “for dust you are and to dust you shall return” reminding us that this body is temporary.

Even though we do not read about Ash Wednesday or Lent, the Bible does mention ashes and dust in several times. Ashes and dust represent human frailty, suffering, sorrow, and mourning.

The ashes used in Ash Wednesday services are normally from the previous year’s Palm Sunday’s services.  Taking the palms of joy welcoming King Jesus and turning them into ashes because of what was done to Him for us is one reason this is done.

Do you use Lent to prepare for Resurrection Sunday?  Are you fasting to remind you to pray and grow closer to Jesus?  Some churches participate while others don’t.  Same with people.  It is a personal choice.  Personally, I think it is good to stay close to Jesus every single day.

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