Posts Tagged ‘#Time’


I heard an African man say, “God gave Americans watches, but He gave Africans time.” So let me make a confession right here at the beginning. I am not the most patient man in the world. (Some who know me well just thought, “Really?”) And please don’t put my patience on the top of your prayer list. James speaks of God teaching us patience through trials and testing.

But I have been spoiled with the post modern ideas of speed and having it right now. When someone recently offered to buy me a new computer, I chose faster speed with the most update processor over a touch screen. So when it comes to ministry I struggle with the same matters of time. I want my calendar organized and filled today. I want my finances in order, today. I want what I want when I want it.

But don’t judge me. God isn’t finished and He often teaches me “Wait on the Lord.” In fact, like many people I know, I pray, and then when God doesn’t act in my schedule I battle the temptation to just do something. And usually the biggest problems in my life occur when I get ahead of God.

Now personally, I don’t think the instructions to “Wait” in the Bible mean do nothing. Usually they come in the form of “Wait before the Lord.” I see in those words a call to prayer. I believe God often asks us to wait before Him so that we will seek Him, and His word promises we will find Him when we seek Him with all of our hearts.

I am glad that God is patient. In fact, more than that He is long-suffering. He has certainly been patient to wait on me.If God were impatient with me, as slow as I am to get it most of the time, I would be in big trouble. There is an urgency, however. There are people dying all over the world and entering into a Christ-less eternity. Somewhere around 2.8 billion of the people on our planet have limited and sometimes no access to the Gospel message. We must be swift to obey the commands of our Lord to “Go into the world and proclaim His kingdom.” We must wait in prayer before the Father praying to the Lord of the harvest to send laborers into His harvest. We need to be willing to stay but planning to go. And not just some of us. He has commissioned every believer.

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I woke up at 3 am this morning. That is not all that unusual for me. At my age I wake up often in the night to go to the restroom, and then usually go back to bed and fall back asleep. This morning I could not go back to sleep. Sometimes I have found that means God is calling me to prayer and that He may have something to say. So at 3:30 I climbed out of bed, got a cup of coffee, and began to pray and read my Bible. I didn’t hear any voice from heaven, or see any vision, or even doze off and have a dream.

But as I prayed, and as I read the Bible, in the midst of the silence of the house, I heard this, “tick,tick,tick . . .” Just as steady and precise as it could be. I wrote an article on logs turning into crocodiles in yesterday’s blog, so I cannot help but think of Captain Hook and his fear of clocks ticking, assuming it might be the crocodile that bit off and swallowed his hand coming (it having also swallowed a clock.)

This ticking, however, was coming from an orange battery powered clock that sits on the table beside the chair where I have been praying and reading. After prayer and the scripture, I read the last chapter in a book entitled, Dreams and Visions, by Doyle. He has a section in that chapter with the title I have given this article. He speaks of time running out. So all of that in the way of introduction to acknowledge that reality.

Time may not really fly, although it speeds by, but it certainly continues to “tick” off of history. Our lives move us second by second close to our own death. History moves second by second closer to the consummation of the ages. As time goes by, the reality is that all around the world there are people who have little or no access to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They will die and spend their eternity in a Christ-less eternity. As I have quoted others before, “The Gospel is not Good News if it doesn’t get there in time.”

Early this morning I have been on the websites, International Mission Board, Frontier Mission, Finishing the Task, and the Joshua Project, to mention a few. The numbers are a “moving target” which is ultimately a good thing. We are making a difference for many. But those who are Unreached with the message, those who have no access to the message, and those who are even under-reached are staggering in volume. And ultimately the problem is there are simply not enough workers in the fields of the harvest. Jesus said that over 2000 years ago, and as the population of the world has mushroomed, the lack of workers is still an issue.

Who will go and tell? Someone else has said, “God is calling more than are going.” We can all pray. Almost all of us can give financially to support the work. Many, maybe even most of us, can go in some form or capacity. For some that might be a career call, for others it may be as a volunteer on shorter trips. But God has called every single church to this task. Pray that we hear and obey. Pray that all will hear before time clicks off and there is no more opportunity. One life indeed matters. Every life indeed matters. You can make a difference.