When Faith and Life Collide
Jeremiah 29:11 “I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you, and not to harm you; plans to give you a hope and a future.
This is a promise many of us have heard. We want to believe it’s true, so how do we handle it when our circumstances seem to prove otherwise? Is this evidence that the Bible isn’t true? I contend that’s not the case. Perhaps we’ve overlooked a piece of the puzzle. Maybe there’s something we haven’t considered.
Nowhere does it tell us how God plans to do to prosper us, or what that looks like. Nor does it tell us when. It does say He’ll give us hope for the future. That’s where faith comes in. Faith that God will fulfill his promise to us. And perseverance until we see how God works it through.
When it comes to many things in my life, I recognize that it takes time to see the fruit(s) of my labor. Building up a retirement account, deepening relationships with friends and family, or growing a garden, doesn't happen overnight. It takes time, perseverance and commitment on my part to see it through to the end.
So, why do we expect God to answer our prayers right away? Because He can? Fair enough, but what if He takes His time so that we grow in the process? That’s been a tough lesson for me to learn, and I find I have to re-learn it many times over. But God has proven that He’s faithful and has my best interest in mind, even when I can’t see it.
How about you? What have you seen God do in times of hardship that you could only recognize after time had passed? How do you handle it in the meantime?