The young man gazed back at me, intensity radiating from every pore. He clenched his big fists in frustration.
Then he dropped his gaze and slumped in his chair. "I'm so tired of waiting. I wanna get ON with it! Why does it have to take so long!"
Timing is one of the hardest lessons to learn. But the life of Joseph in the book of Genesis gives us a perfect example of the difficulty waiting on God's timing.
Sold into slavery at the age of 17, Joseph toiled for years at menial tasks, working for someone else, and receiving very little appreciation. In fact, to reward such loyalty, he was thrown in prison for something he didn't do. All because he was trying to obey God the very best he knew how.
He, too, was called by God for something big. He'd known it from his early teens. He must have expected a triumphant ride to glory as God revealed the thrilling ministry He'd chosen for Joseph. Instead, he got the dungeon.
We humans are so time-conscious. We watch the clock and the calendar and assume God is doing the same. He's not.
He is above time. He's all about preparation and working things out the way He wants them to go. After all, He's the only one who knows what's around the bend ten...twenty...a thousand years from now.
What does he expect us to do in the meantime?
As I told my eager client, God is looking for those who have proven themselves faithful in the interim. We like to focus on the end result: Joseph being honored as second in command over all Egypt.
But what was Joseph doing in those 13 years before fame?
He was proving himself faithful in everything he did. No floor was better swept. No food better served or correspondence more neatly written for whoever was dictating. No job was too small to do perfectly in honor of his God.
Is that your attitude? Are you punching that time-clock in honor of your God? Are you waiting tables, creating spreadsheets, making service calls in honor of your God? Are you providing for your family, teaching your children or someone else's, or caring for a sick parent in honor of your God?
God looks for servants like that when He's ready to hand out big assignments.
"He who is faithful in little will be trusted with much."
It could be you're only in God's graduate school. The best is yet to come.
Don't be a dropout and miss the life calling He has for you. Stay faithful. You won't regret it.