“I wait for the LORD, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope.”(Psalm 130:5)
My two younger sons, Ezekiel&Nathanael helped me bake some banana muffins the other morning. As always, they were excited to help with the best part being licking the utensils afterwards...well, mostly afterwards 😬.
Once the batter was in the muffin pans and placed in the oven, the boys then popped themselves on the floor in front of the oven to watch and waited until it was done.
They had “laboured” in the preparation phase...selected and measured out the ingredients...combined them and placed them in the oven and now the wait of 20 minutes began. That 20 minutes would slowly but surely render the verdict on the success of their efforts.
This got me thinking...how many times does one labour and toil?You do your best; you dig deep; you give till the resources run dry. After all this, you fold onto the floor in front of the “oven” watching and waiting for the fruit of your efforts to be yielded.
The difference between muffin making and “life”, is this: with muffins, if all the factors are cross checked and correct - ingredient quality and quantities, oven time and temperature - there’s very little that can go wrong. The results are mostly guaranteed.
With life, however, you can do all you can to ensure that the conditions are perfect, but there are often factors outside of one’s control, seen and unseen, that can effect and affect the process. The result: the “finished product” is either misshapen and marred; or it is not forthcoming at all.
You’ve watched and waited, waited and watched but nothing!
You hovered with hope but nothing!
You toiled and tarried with tears but nothing!
Wouldn’t it be awesome if life, ministry and service was like muffin making? Wouldn’t it be awesome if, in all circumstances, we could sit, like my two boys, with wide-eyed wonder. Waiting, not for IF the results will evident but for WHEN they will be. Childlike faith that says, “I’ve done what I possibly can, I stuck to the plan (or recipe)- nothing can go wrong.” Well, Friend, the truth is you can! You can, after doing what’s possible with the time, talents and treasures afforded you by God, watch and wait for the results. Sure, the time frame may be a tad longer than the 20 minutes baking time; in fact you may only perceive the fruit of your labour in eternity one day. However, you can live in the light of the adage (which my Dad, Victor, often used to encourage me before a big examination): “Do your best! God will take care of the rest!”
Friend, whatever it is that you are watching and waiting for, may you be given the patience to hang in there till the fruit of your labour is evident, and/or the grace and peace needed when that fruit is not clearly evident.
Either way, you’ve done what can be humanly controlled-your best! God will take care of what cannot be humanly controlled - the rest.
Either way, may you be filled with the same joy my boys (and family) were filled with when they got to enjoy the finished product.
Lord, I’m not the most patient,
Oft get worn, worried and wearied by the wait;
Fill me with patience and peace, assured,
That you‘re always on time, never late.