Monday, 26 September 2011
Waiting for a Savior
Waiting for a Savior is not like waiting in line at Disneyland. At Disneyland my biggest problem is boredom. That’s why they designed even the waiting time to be entertaining, so I wouldn’t get bored and leave. But in this fallen world as a citizen of the heavenly kingdom the waiting is much more dangerous. “Through many dangers, toils, and snares, I have already come…” says the hymn, and we would agree, though past dangers are a lot easier to see than the ones that presently threaten us.
That’s why God through Paul tells us how to wait. The exhortations are for our safety. Here’s what it looked like in my life this week.
Tuesday was the day I tried to finish my preparation for Friday night’s event, “Finding Christ in Christmas.” God gave me faith and energy to work on the third, hopefully final, draft and send it off to a few people for critique. I had a sense that something was not quite right with it, but I had done all I could.
By Wednesday morning I had received my first reply. After encouraging me, she nailed the one thing I, too, felt was unfinished. The only thing that wasn’t yet vivid was Jesus! I needed to flesh him out. I stayed home that morning for one final session. But by noon when I had to leave, I was in tears. I felt like I had written myself into a corner and couldn’t find my way out. Dashing out the door, I realized that I had left my phone behind. Oh, no, did I put it in the wash? Running back inside I pulled the wet clothes out of the washer one by one. No phone. Great, but where is it? No more time to look, but as I drove away, more urgent, unfinished tasks kept spilling into my mind.
Right there, in my car, the Spirit brought God’s lively word to mind. God’s love filtered through Paul’s tender words to the Philippians: Daughter, whom I love and long for, my joy and my crown, stand firm in me right now. You are in danger from this anxiety. Stand against it. Ask me everything, every little thing that is on your heart. Have I ever failed you? Thank me. As I began to do that, his peace crept back in, request by request. Throughout the day his peace kept anxiety at bay.
Thursday I was ready with new ideas to repair the flaw. But I awoke with a migraine. By afternoon I was again battling anxiety with prayer, but still the flaw wouldn’t fix. Mark was home, so I finally burst into his study and asked him for help. In short sequence he found the problem, typed in several paragraphs, gave me my main statement, and got me over the hump. The rest flowed in short order as the headache dissipated.
When I finished I realized that God had answered my prayers, but differently than I had expected. I thought he would give me help directly, but instead he used Mark. I didn’t like that because I wanted to do it ” by self.” After receiving Mark’s help, I realized that God had removed any opportunity for boasting. He knew that pride was as big a danger as anxiety, and he had kindly rescued me from it. I wasn’t even aware of the danger. Praise him with me for his great love, wisdom, and power to save!
How has God rescued you this week from many dangers, toils, and snares? If you get a chance, tell us, so we can rejoice in him together.