Recently God told me something he is planning to do in my life. It was a truly beautiful promise – one I couldn’t have imagined on my own – and I was greatly excited about it. I walked around on a cloud for a few days, all smiles. But the hard thing when you’ve been promised something is that very often you do not receive it immediately. I started to get impatient. I began petitioning God to have it then, not later. Moreover, he’d shown me what was to happen, so I was very tempted to ‘help’ things along. He then showed me this image and it helped me with the waiting:
I saw the Father carving a piece of wood into a little bird, with its wings spread in flight. The carving was small – you could hold it in your hands – and was finely crafted, full of detail, and in need of careful handling. It was almost done, and I could see how beautiful it was going to be. But I was frustrated that it was taking so long to finish. I was so eager to have it that I, the little child watching him carve it, went and took the bird out of his hands while he was still busy with it. I grabbed hold of the knife and tried to quickly finish the last details myself. This completely ruined the figurine because I did not have the skill of the Father.
That simple picture has helped me realise that when God says he has a plan, it is craziness to try and take it out of his hands in the final stages of its completion. Sometimes we are given a glimpse of what our story is going to be, but those fine, finishing details are important and cannot be skipped or rushed. While the final touches may take a little longer to achieve, only God has the skill and creativity to finish a job properly. In knowing that, I can be more patient.
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)