(…continued from part six…)
7) God’s delay, for the benefit of questionary hearts, is never a denial of goodness. It is a means of testing the strength of an individual’s faith. Abraham most probably, at the age of around fifty, married Sarah. Had God not told the Adamic world to, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion” in Genesis 1:28? So, what is the rationale behind these many decades of Abrahamic waiting on the LORD for his wife’s fruit of the womb? After many shows of Abraham’s unwavering faith, and Sarah’s supportive obedience to Abraham’s headship, the LORD God showed up, physically, at Abraham’s home. ”I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son” [Genesis 18:10]. Circumstantial staging of existential phenomenality, most certainly, knows how to erode your prized faith during the workability processes of God’s promised word.
“Shall I of a surety bear a child?”
Sarah had long stopped seeing her menstrual flow –emblematic of fertility. Her matrix had ceased functioning as a foetus nursery. These were experiential realities. What should one give one’s vote of faith to: doubtless physicality of one’s being, on one hand, or the word of the ‘unseen’ God? Sarah was not the only one to scorn the promise of Jehovah, Abraham in the preceding 17th chapter had shook his head, laughed to scorn, the promise of God: “Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear?” [Genesis 17:17].
What none expected began to receive biological attention. Sarah conceived. Months rolled by. The supposedly deadness of Sarah’s dishevelled matrix came to life and nurtured the foetus that eventually culminated in the accouchement of the promised Isaac. Delay is not denial. Sarah had the last laugh, so is the plan of God for every believing person. Amen.
How could a teacher of theology live a life of penury? So, Jabez prayed, wanting to be no more called a pitiful man of penury. Only God knows for how long he continued to offer the prayer of a man of hope. Did Jabez die hopelessly wretched? “And Jabez was more honourable than his brethren” [1Chronicles 4:9] is the proof that God’s delay is not a denial. In the Book of 2Kings chapter 5, Naaman could not get his healing the way of his dramatic wish, “Behold, I thought, He will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper” [2Kings 5:11]. The prophet, Elisha, would not have it according to the generalissimo’s way. The delay was to test Naaman’s faith in the God of Israel. He dived into Jordan and came out, dived in and out a total number of seven times. Seven being the number of perfection, Naaman’s tested faith yielded the desired result: “and his flesh came again like unto the flesh of a little child, and he was clean” [2Kings 5:14]. The delay in Naaman’s miracle was not a denial of God’s beneficence.
Have they been laughing at you: calling you a failure; wretched poor; barren witch; useless idiot and even challenging your Jesus to do something about your predicament? Let the delay strengthen your faith. You will laugh last. Joy cometh in the morning. Jehovah’s delay is not a denial of your happiness. Amen.
Seven dives of delay did not deny Naaman of his miracle
I was living in two very tiny rooms with my family in 1993. I searched and sought for a good apartment which yielded not a favourable success. My landlord was a man of incredible wickedness. Our disagreements made him take us to court. The court allowed us a stay in his house for not more than six months. He promised to throw me out of his property if I should stay for few hours after the 31st of October, 2000 court ruling. It would have given him the bestial joy of sadism; I know. The good Lord knew that we did everything we could; and asked everyone we came across, to help in getting another place.
In those days –of six months of my stay in his house— I had to see Mr. Kusimo, the landlord, in his sitting room. I looked into his eyes and told him, “Sir, I know you’re counting the days of putting me to disgrace, but I’d like you to understand that, ten thousand years ago God counted the number of days I’d spend in your house; a million years ago God counted and He finished counting the number of days. So, please, stop worrying yourself.”
I continued the discussion, “Honestly, I don’t know where He is taking me after this place, but, because I know that He is a Big God, and for His love for me, He’ll probably get me a big apartment.” Two years before the court case we had embarked on moving into another place to no avail. Just one day to the last day, the 30th of October, 2000, the good Lord found us a place! It was well after 9pm, when the new landlord said we should come the following day for the keys. I told him we needed to have the keys as a testimony of God’s beneficence. He agreed. The new landlord did not take the first rent from tenants -his lawyer was responsible for that. Now, because God was involved in our peculiar case, Mr. Ògún took the rent from our hands. The rent was 75 thousand naira. “All I have here is 70 thousand, I’m giving you my word that, you’ll get the remaining five as soon as I lay my hands on it.” You know what? Mr Ògún’s unbelievable answer was, “Okay.” We left his house –soon to house my family— sometime after 10pm, victorious soldiers of Christ.
Early the following morning, my wife announced, in Yoruba tongue, “A ti rí’lé ooo! –“We’ve got an apartment!” and the entire tenants could not hide their joyous elation. It was electric. Honestly, the charged response was reminiscent of the jubilant shout one hears from enthusiastic Nigerians when the Super Eagles scores the winning goal of a football tournament. It was a three bedroom flat. The children’s room alone was bigger than the two rooms, we used to dwell in, put together! Delay is not denial!
Job, in all his epic trials, did not die a wretched man
Have you been told that you can never be a million naira rich? Have faith in the workability of divine operations. They that used their mouths to rubbish your future will have to queue up to receive monetary donations from your hands when the LORD God eventually makes you a billionaire, not in Nigerian naira but in the USA dollars. With God nothing shall be impossible. “And Jabez was more honourable than his brethren”, the Bible reveals. The word ‘honourable’ is the Hebraic kâbad (kaw-bad’): ‘to be heavy; be weighty; be rich’. Jabez became a heavyweight financial controller. Are you still reeling in poverty? God’s delay is not denial.
After Samuel anointed him, David had to wait 13 years to ascend the throne.
Isaiah was sent to tell the Southern Kingdom of Judah’s king to put his house in order, in readiness for his death. God delayed the king’s time of death, expecting him to look up to Him for divine intervention. He had been terribly sick, to the point of death, for some time [Isaiah 38:1-7]. The faith wielding king cried onto Jehovah God. Fifteen more years was added to the king’s days, which enabled him to father Manasseh, the next king of Judah. Is delay a denial? Selah!
Get born again. Say this simple prayer, believing it with all your heart. Say:
“Dear heavenly Father, I come to You now in the name of Jesus Christ. I believe in my heart that Jesus is the Son of God. I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sin. I believe that You raised Him from the dead. I confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord and I receive Him now as my Lord and my Saviour. I give God all the glory. Amen!”
Read the 6th part here