June 2, 2016
It’s All About Timing
And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19, NIV).
Friend to Friend
My husband was determined to teach me how to fish … whether I wanted to learn or not. We were on vacation with our two children and everyone was getting in on Dan’s fishing lessons.
Danna had already announced that she would never - under any circumstances - touch a worm or a fish. Dan and Jered promised to bait her hook and reel in any fish she caught. I knew what they were thinking: the possibility of Danna actually learning how to cast a line or catch a fish was so remote that they had nothing to fear. They could not have been more wrong.
The fish seemed to jump on Danna’s hook. She squealed with excitement as she literally dragged fish after fish onto the shore and watched her brother and dad hurriedly unhook the fish and toss it back in the water.
I was next.
Dan patiently explained that the reel should be below rod. I could sense his confidence wane when I asked him which thing-a-ma-jig was a rod and which doo-hickey was a reel. He pressed on, encouraging me to just listen. Dan then promised that I would be catching fish in no time as he gave the following list of directions:
Let out the line until there are about six inches hanging out.
Hold the line against the rod with the crook of your index finger.
Point the rod at the spot on the lake you want to hit.
In one smooth motion, bring the rod up, allowing the tip to flex behind you.
Without pausing, push the rod forward.
Use your elbow and wrist – not your shoulder.
When the tip of the rod is halfway to the target, let go of the line with your index finger.
I must have been in shock because I did not understand one word my delusional husband had just spoken.
“The lure will go flying,” Dan assured me. It did indeed fly – backwards into the trees on the shore, catching on a limb.
Dan patiently dislodged the hook and then smiled and said, “Your timing is just a little off, honey. Fishing is all about timing.”
I could not have agreed more. It was time for me to go back to the cabin, grab a book and drink, and head for the hammock.
Dan decided to call in our son for support. Jered looked at me and said, “Mom, do you really want to do this?” He knows me well. “Nope! Not even a little bit,” I said. He grinned and gave me a shorter and much simpler set of directions that ended with, “Mom, it really is all about timing. Just relax and have fun.” I could not imagine fishing and fun existing in the same world, but I tried.
My hook got caught in rocks, bushes and the back of my shirt. At that point, I said, “Enough! I am done!”
Dan said, “Honey, think about Babe Ruth.” I was lost. What did Babe Ruth have to do with fishing?
Dan said, “Babe Ruth hit a lot of foul balls and struck out many times, but he never gave up and became a baseball legend.”
I knew that.
Dan explained, “Babe Ruth said that the difference between a foul ball and a homerun is timing. The same is true of fishing.” I. Did. Not. Care. When Dan saw that look in my eye, he grinned and said, “Want to head back to the cabin?” I did.
As I lay in the hammock, I breathed in the sweet mountain air and let my thoughts wander, landing once again on the importance of timing – in life and in God’s plan.
A financial need arises and I panic – until the unexpected check arrives in the mail.
Discouragement makes me want to quit – until an email of thanks lands in my inbox.
I want the chronic pain to be taken away – until I realize that God uses it to keep me desperate for Him.
Our daughter and her family have to move hundreds of miles away because her husband got a great job offer. I struggle and cry my way to a place of acceptance and peace about their decision – and then the job offer of a lifetime opens up here, and they don’t have to move.
Yes! God’s timing is perfect. It always has been and always will be perfect. Why can’t I accept that truth? Why can’t I trust Him even when circumstances falsely scream that He is not trustworthy? When will I learn to walk by faith, knowing that He is faithful even when I am faithless?
God’s ways are higher than my ways and the ways of this broken world.
God’s thoughts surpass the highest human thought I will ever have.
God will always come through for me.
God is for me.
God’s love is not a shallow love that always rescues easily or quickly. God loves us enough to walk us through the fiery times that make us more like His Son, Jesus Christ. Again … His ways are not our ways, and our thoughts are so often very different from His thoughts.
God is Holy.
God is faithful.
And we really can trust Him to work at the right time and in the right way for our good and for His glory.
Father, Thank You for meeting the needs in my life in Your perfect timing. Forgive me when I fail to trust You. I want to learn how to wait on You to work in my life. Your faithfulness sustains me and Your mercy blesses my life. I praise You, God!
In Jesus’ Name,
Now It’s Your Turn
Read Psalm 104:13-15. How does this passage of Scripture encourage you to trust God in every area of your life?
What need in your life is a source of fear and uncertainty? Right now, surrender that need to God and praise Him for meeting it.
If you need help learning how to trust God, get Mary’s new book,
10-Day Trust Adventure, now available in hard copy.
Perfect for personal or small group study, this book addresses every decision you make - and teaches you how to make those decisions as you step out in faith and trust God.
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Originally published Thursday, 02 June 2016.