It seems like once a day someone asks me "So, how's support raising going?" and I'm never quite sure how to respond. It doesn't seem real appropriate to say "Terrible, thanks for asking" even though sometimes that's the truth.
I feel like I've been raising support for years (in reality it's only been about 7 months) and there are days when I'm really really discouraged. There are days when I doubt if this is really what God has called me to do. There are days when I want to quit. And to be honest there are days when I do quit.
There are parts of support raising that I really love. And really the whole of it is not that terrible. But the days when the lies are screaming and truth is just a whisper make it hard to see that.
This season of my life is just not my favorite. I'm not living where I want to be living, I struggle with being content in my singleness, my relationships amongst friends and family fall short constantly and I'm not on campus doing the ministry I love so much.
I just want this part of my life to be over and done with and move on to a different season.
But I know that this season is God-ordained. I know that "He has made everything appropriate in it's time" (Ecclesiastes 3:11). Another translation says: "He has set the right time for everything"
I don't doubt that God has placed me here and now, in this time, for any reason other than His Glory.
I was reminded on Sunday, that God delays sometimes. Through Lazarus' death in John 11 I saw God's heart in the delay.
Jesus heard word of Lazarus' sickness and intentionally waited two extra days before setting off to see him. (John 11:6)
When he finally arrived in Bethany (the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus) Lazarus had already been dead for four days.
This is significant because the first century culture in the Middle East believed that your soul stayed with your body until it started to smell. When Jesus meets Lazarus, Mary makes it clear he probably stinks.
Jesus commands the stone to be rolled away and says "Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?"
And whamo-kablamo Lazarus walks out of the tomb
(I sort of wonder if he was still smelly...)
God's glory is on fully display. Jesus really is God. He really did raise someone from the dead.
And there was no way they could say anyone or anything but Jesus raised him because he already started to smell.
Jesus had to wait that extra time so that His glory would be fully displayed.
So could God have healed Lazarus before he even died? Sure.
Could he have come quicker so Mary and Martha wouldn't have felt so much pain? Sure.
Could he have raised Lazarus before he started to stink? Absolutely.
But he intentionally delayed so that when the time came to raise him from the dead His full glory was shown.
God waits. On purpose.
The days when I give up. When it seems like God isn't going to show up. When it feels like this is taking too long. When I'm ready to quit.
Those are the moments I need to remember stinky Lazarus.
And how God's delay was the very best thing.
Linking up with Thought Provoking Thursdays, Imperfect Prose