Are You Facing A Delay?

This weekend, my daughter took a mini-vacation to Atlanta. Her goal this year is to do a bit of traveling and this was the first trip on her long list. The flight left out of LaGuardia Airport and if you know anything about this airport, there’s always a hiccup.

Before she even got on the plane, the flight was delayed two hours. I was disappointed for her since spending time in an airport was not on her bucket list. This little hiccup got me to thinking about a phrase I often hear when referring to God answering our prayers: 

A delay is not a denial.

My daughter was not denied arriving at her final destination. She was just delayed a bit. While I was sad for her, she maintained a good attitude and used the time to chat with her friend.

This same mindset needs to be applied to our prayer life. Just because we don’t get our answer the nanosecond we ask does not mean we will not get an answer. It might just mean we have to…wait for it.

Yikes! Wait! That’ s four letter word in the culture we live in, isn’t it? Waiting is akin to torture. Yet if we study any of the people in the Bible (Old and New Testament), there was always a waiting period. Always.

  • Abraham was told he would be the father of many nations. He and his barren wife Sarah waited 20+ years for the blessed event. 
  • The Israelites were told they would inherit the Promised Land after their enslavement in Egypt. It took forty years for them to get there. (Hmm… maybe LaGuardia Airport isn’t so bad!)
  • Paul was told that he would one day stand before kings. It took decades after his dramatic conversion before this happened.

With God, there is almost always a waiting period. So instead of fighting it, perhaps we can embrace it and have a better attitude about it. 

Here’s what I’m learning:

  • If we got everything we asked for the moment we asked for it, we’d all turn into a bunch of spoiled children. Also, we might begin taking things for granted and not appreciate the thing we received, nor the Person who gave it to us.
  • When we have to wait for something, we value it more. We tend to take care of things we work hard for or had to wait to receive.
  • We can make a decision while we wait. We can whine and complain about the delay or we can use the time to be grateful for all we  have or other positive circumstances in our lives.
  • While we are waiting, we can thank God that He IS going to answer us and He WILL do more than what we expected.

As I waited for the “I’m here” text from my daughter, I was super grateful that she arrived safely. I was even more grateful for my dear friends who are hosting her at their home. I also realized that this delay was pretty minor and the only thing she “lost” was a few hours of time.

If you are facing a delayed answer to prayer, consider using the waiting time to grow closer to God, spend time in His Word, talk with Him and thank Him for the answer as well as the b-zillion prayers He’s already answered. 

Before you know it, you’ll arrive at your final destination safe and sound.

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