At the track, timing is everything. Quick lap times and fast pit stops can dictate the outcome of a race. A stopwatch doesn’t measure God’s timing, though. While we may not like it, it’s usually for our good. So how do we adjust our sense of timing to align with God? Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
“Hurry up and wait.” It’s an expression I often hear at the track. Hurry to get to the track and register, then wait in line. Hurry to get unloaded and prep the car, then wait to get out on track. Hurry up to prep for qualifying or heats, then wait through 5 caution flags in the heat before yours. It’s an endless cycle, so it seems, one that can test even the most patient person.
When we look at scriptures, God often doesn’t move quickly. One of the first examples is in Genesis. God told Noah to build the Ark. Noah spent somewhere around 60 to 100 years making it, but when it was done, God sent the rain. God knew the timing of everything, and it was all perfectly orchestrated to preserve His creation.
When God’s timing doesn’t align with ours, we sometimes try and force the issue. Even Abraham did it. First, there was a promise from God
“And he brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven, and number the stars, if you are able to number them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” And he believed the Lord, and he counted it to him as righteousness.” Genesis 15:5-6 ESV
God promised Abraham he’d have so many descendants that you couldn’t even count them. Sounds excellent, except Abraham and his wife were around 99 years old. Well, ten years went by and no children, so Abraham took his wife’s servant and had a child with her. The problem is that wasn’t what God said. About another 14 years passed before his wife bore Isaac. So when we have trouble waiting 25 minutes for the heat races to finish, Abraham waited 25 years for God to fulfill his promise.
Timing at the track dictates the flow of the day. In some cases, practice times dictate what heat you’re in or when you qualify. It shows where you stand with the rest of the field. Teams rely on this to determine what they need to do to be faster. God doesn’t wonder what everyone else is going to do. First, he knows. Second, he already has the best plan. God has information we don’t. He knows what is best, and it’s why we should trust Him.
When we decide to trust God in situations in our lives, it may mean we have to wait. Waiting isn’t a “no” from God; it’s a “not yet.” The people of Israel knew all about waiting. God had promised them a land of their own. “The time that the people of Israel lived in Egypt was 430 years. At the end of 430 years, on that very day, all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.” Exodus 12:40-41 ESV
430 years!! Oh wait, then the people got cranky, and God had them wander around the desert for another 40. The timing was perfect. God led them into the promised land, and they quickly defeated 31 opposing kings.
Four hundred seventy years is kind of short when you consider the writing of Isaiah and the foretelling of the birth of our savior.
“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”
Isaiah 7:14 ESV This was almost 800 years before Jesus was born!
There are some things in life that we may not understand God’s timing. One of those for me was 16 years ago and the passing of my father. My father had been diagnosed with stage 4 esophageal cancer at almost the same time my wife and I found out we were expecting our first child. Just seven days before my wife was due, my father went to be with Jesus. Eight days after his passing, my son was born. They were a dark eight days wondering why God didn’t give my father an extra couple of weeks to meet his grandson. However, God did do something extraordinary. Through my son and my father’s death, He revealed how deep and amazing his love is. I instantly loved my newborn son so much. It gave me an appreciation of how much my dad loved me. Even more so, it gave me just a tiny glimpse of how big God’s love for us is. It was at that moment I realized the timing didn’t matter. It was the message God had for me that was important.
Trust in God’s perfect plan and timing. Remember: “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9. How long did God wait for you to come to him? We certainly didn’t deserve that patience, but He waited anyway.
When we look and trust that God has control over all things, the timing of when he moves becomes secondary. Trust in the Word and trust that the timing you want may not be the timing you need. Until next time, remember God loves you and Jesus is Lord over Auto Racing! God Bless. Remember that your prayerful support and donations help us continue this ministry. Thank You.