Devotionals

Dealing With the Process that Comes Before the Promise

5 Mins read

God still makes promises to His people. Sometimes these promises can come through His Word while there are other instances of God, through the presence of the Holy Spirit, makes promises specifically to His children in their spirit. However, those promises don’t always come quickly. Sometimes there is a process that we have to endure before the promise comes to fruition. Understanding how to navigate the process is one of the most important aspects of realizing the promise.

We live in a culture that teaches instant gratification. The most profitable “restaurants” in the world are those that provide a drive-thru option, because we don’t want to wait on a meal. Even if we do eat at home, we often rely on microwavable options that allow us to have our food ready in five minutes or less. When we need to know something, we quickly pull out a phone, type our question in, and garner an immediate response.

Please, don’t misunderstand the heart of what I’m saying. Taking advantage of the resources we have available to us is not wrong or sinful. God is not shaken by the instant gratification that we have access to in regard to food, information, or other areas of life that have been impacted by advances. Instead, it’s simply important that we realize that not everything can be instant. That’s just not the way that everything works, especially not the promises of God.

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Take for instance, the process of building a home. You’ve worked with an architect and a designer, so you know what the finished product is going to look like. That’s the promise. However, the process of getting there is a lengthy one. When the construction crew begins the building process by digging deep trenches and filling them with concrete, it doesn’t look anything like a home. Even when some of the frame begins to go up, it’s hard to believe that those pieces of lumber are going to serve as the bones of the home that you want to make a lifetime of memories in. The process can be lengthy and even frustrating at times. However,

I remember the first time I was around a home build. During the summer between my senior year of high school and freshman year of college, a family friend gave me a job working for his construction company. One of our first jobs was building a home for a family. Admittedly, as a total rookie to the industry, most of my responsibilities involved carrying supplies to the guys who knew what they were doing. However, I couldn’t help but wonder how the mess that it looked like we were making was ever going to turn into a home.

A couple weeks into the process, I finally asked the boss how this was going to work out. As the “new guy” who had never seen a home built from the ground up, all I could see was sawdust, extension cords, concrete, and some lumber. He chuckled a little bit, looked at me and said, “It’s all part of the process.”

I’ll concede, at the time I didn’t fully appreciate what he meant by that. However, after several months of work, we finally installed the last window in the last upstairs bedroom. I still remember what it felt like to stand out front with the guys I had spent an entire summer working with and looking at the finished product. It was so hard for me to believe that the same property that had been nothing more than a construction site during the summer was now a home that a family was going to live in, celebrate holidays in, and create memories in. And I got to be a part of it!

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Our lives are a lot like that home that I helped build. In the name of total transparency, I’ll concede that I didn’t help build much. When I wasn’t carrying materials around, I was also going on lunch pickups. However, I did get to drive a few nails along the way, so I guess I can say I helped. But I digress. Our lives are a lot like that home. Sometimes things look like a mess, but we know what the promise looks like. It’s difficult to see how things are going to look in the end when we’re so caught up in the process.

Maybe you’re waiting on a promise from God, but you’re feeling like my 18-year-old self felt sitting beside my boss one day. “How is this going to turn into anything beautiful?” Questions like that are normal, and God is not frustrated by our frustrations.

David knew a few things about waiting for promises to come to fruition. We can look to the Psalms that he wrote to get a better understanding of how to navigate the process in pursuit of the promise. Child of God, your house is still being built, and the promise is coming.

Psalm 40:1-3 (TPT)
I waited and waited some more, patiently, knowing God would come through for me. Then, at last, he bent down and listened to my cry. He stooped down to life me out of danger from the desolate pit I was in, out of the muddy mess I had fallen into. Now he’s lifted me up into a firm, secure place and steadied me while I walk along the ascending path. A new song for a new day rises up in me every time I think about how he breaks through for me! Ecstatic praise pours out of my mouth until everyone hears how God has set me free. Many will see his miracles; they’ll stand in awe of God and fall in love with him!

David was no stranger to waiting on the fulfilment of God’s promises in his life. Afterall, history teaches us that nearly 15 years elapsed between the day when Samuel anointed him as the king who would replace Saul and the day he ascended to the throne. David was good at waiting. However, the words he shared here provide us with a good roadmap for waiting for the promise, even when the process seems lengthy.

First of all, David said that he “waited and waited some more, patiently.” Patience is something that most of us struggle with. When we know what we want or we know what God has promised us, we usually want it right now. Afterall, if it’s a gift from God, why would we have to wait? Because patience teaches us about ourselves and about God.

Secondly, David said that “at least, He bent down and listened to my cry.” When we’re in the process, it’s important that we remember that God has not forgotten us. No, we have no idea why the process takes so long sometimes. We don’t get to know the mind of God (Romans 11:34). Instead, we have to trust what we know about Him to get us through the seasons of waiting. We know that God loves us, we know that God cares for us as a Father cares for His children. When we rest in what we know, we don’t have to worry so much about what we see. I didn’t know anything about building a home when I asked my boss how the mess we made was going to turn into a home. He did. Based on his knowledge of the situation, he knew that it was going to look like the house in the drawings. When we focus on what we know, what we see isn’t as important.

Finally, David said that he would praise God every day. Why? Because he wanted other people to hear his story and fall in love with God. Your season of waiting is a powerful ministry opportunity. It gives you the opportunity to tell others about His love, faithfulness, and grace.

A Closing Prayer:
God, help me to remain focused on You in the season of waiting. I know what You have promised me, and I know that You see the big picture. Help me to remain focused on the promise and experience Your presence during the process. In Christ’s name, Amen.

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