If you were put in your parents’ place and had to raise you, would you be more patient than your parents or less? The answer would probably be less in most cases. That’s because you know yourself and what your intentions are. Your parents want the best for you so they show true love by being patient. God is patient with you even though he knows your thoughts and motives.
“The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”
God Knows the Best Timing
Peter shows you three ways that God is patient with you. First, He knows the best timing to fulfill his promises. While you may think God is slow in working in your life, God sees it as giving you what you need when you need it. Most people act like impatient children and want everything now. God isn’t swayed by our whims but patiently waits until the time is right. Trust Him during this process.
The second way that God is patient with you is that He shows you mercy by not giving you what you deserve. When people are selfish and expect the world to revolve around them, God isn’t quick to discipline them. Instead, He lets your actions take their course and works lessons through the fallout. It’s a subtle wake-up call. He doesn’t want you to perish over your unwise decisions.
God is Patient With You
Finally, God is patient with you by desiring repentance in your heart and his willingness to wait for it. All of us do sinful things that deserve some punishment. God chooses to allow time for you to ask for forgiveness from your sins. It is especially true when it comes to your salvation. He doesn’t want you or anyone else to spend eternity in hell but gives you multiple opportunities to give your life to Him.
Touring old castles can give you a picture of God’s love and protection. Those castles have been around for centuries and provided shelter and protection to the multitudes. It endured battles and weathered storms yet remain. That is what David is talking about when he describes the protection God has given him. You can find refuge in the Lord as well when you turn to Jesus in times of trouble.
“My lovingkindness and my fortress, My stronghold and my deliverer, My shield and He in whom I take refuge, Who subdues my people under me.”
God is Your Protection
David knew God as his protector. God had protected him as a young boy while he watched the sheep, as a young man while he was fleeing from Saul, and as an old man when he had to flee his son Absalom’s coup attempt. He saw God as his fortress that was steadfast and never wavered. Do you look at the Lord the same way? Do you recognize how God has protected you over your lifetime? When you see how He has been your shield that has delivered you repeatedly, it changes your perspective on life.
God’s love is steadfast. That means it is unshakeable, not going anywhere. Jesus is the rock on whom you can anchor your life. He will not leave you nor turn his back on you when things get tough. He steps up and shields you from the attacks, and delivers you from danger. There is nothing to fear. Going it alone will lead to undue pain and suffering. Letting Jesus be your refuge will shelter you.
Finding Refuge in the Lord
Where do you usually turn when things get difficult? Do you sink into a social media vortex? Maybe you drown yourself in something like alcohol? Whatever the vice is, you have an alternative in Jesus. He is there to be your fortress. Run to Him in prayer, reading scriptures, and Godly fellowship. You will find that He is there waiting to comfort you in your distress.
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Have you ever been in the same room with someone who is incredibly smart? How did it make you feel? Were you intimidated by their knowledge or fascinated by what they had to say? Some people feel this way with God. They are either overwhelmed by how great He is or exhilarated with the wealth of knowledge and wisdom.
“Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!”
Impossible to Comprehend
Paul summarizes the immensity of God in these two statements. The depth of the knowledge and wisdom of God are too deep to plumb, and it is impossible to understand His ways. We don’t need to know the depth of His knowledge. All we need to know is that we will never reach the bottom, and it will never run out. If you ask for the wisdom of God, He will give you a double portion. Think about that for a second. The resources are infinite, and He gives you twice as much as you ask.
The depth of God’s judgments is not impossible to understand, but the wisdom behind it is more than we can comprehend. God can literally consider everything all at once and make His decisions based on that knowledge. That is more than our finite brains can handle. This is where faith comes in. We have to trust God’s wisdom and ways. It’s coming to the understanding that how God works is more than we understand.
A Wealth of Knowledge and Wisdom
Ben Franklin said, “knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit, wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad. You need both the knowledge and wisdom of God if you are going to navigate this life. You have to understand why things are the way they are and then know the right decisions to make as a result. Immerse yourself in God’s Word to get the knowledge and seek the Holy Spirit to use it wisely.
Old habits are hard to break. This is especially true when it comes to bad ones. The same can be said for our sin. We often repeat the same sins over and over again and really don’t have a clue how to break the cycle. Very few people possess the willpower to stop. Peter shows us another way to be rescued from temptation.
“then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment,”
A History of Rescues
In the previous verses leading up to this one, Peter states how God brought judgment on through the flood and on Sodom and Gomorrah, yet he rescued both Noah and Lot. If the Lord rescued them, then He knows how to rescue you from temptation. This is good news for those who struggle with daily temptation. Jesus can preserve you through the trial and strengthen you through the process. The real question then is, “Are you crying out to Jesus in your time of need?”
Everyone faces temptation. It is no respecter of people. Jesus faced temptation, and so will you. It won’t stop until Jesus returns on the clouds for His bride, the church. Since you know it will be constant in your life, it is best to learn how to deal with it when it comes. Temptation often starts with the eyes and the mind. The Bible tells us to take every thought captive. Recognize it is a path to sin and ask God to grant you the strength to overcome. When you are presented with an opportunity to sin with your body, you need to ask God for the strength to resist. You’ll be amazed at the power these simple steps can make.
Rescued from Temptation
It is time for your to live in freedom from sin. Don’t live your life in the pit of despair. You can break free from the chains of sin and the cycle of giving in to temptation. Go to Jesus, repent of your ways, and then ask for the Holy Spirit to fill you with the power and discernment to overcome. Start fresh today and if you stumble, get back up and keep going in the right direction.
Teachers have one of the most demanding jobs on the planet. I couldn’t imagine spending the whole day in a classroom with a group of students trying to keep their attention. King David had a teachable heart. He wanted to grow in his knowledge of the Word of God and was always asking to be shown the way. Do you have a teachable heart?
“Let me hear Your lovingkindness in the morning; For I trust in You; Teach me the way in which I should walk; For to You I lift up my soul.”
Waking Up With God on Your Mind
David wanted to wake up every morning with God on his mind. “Let me hear you lovingkindness in the morning.” It’s like saying, fill my heart with your love for today. He didn’t want to be bogged down with the day’s worries. Instead, he wanted to be lifted high above it all by receiving from the Lord. What a great example. David’s trust was where it should be, and he wanted that to lift his soul.
He also wasn’t satisfied being blessed. David wanted to grow. “Teach me the way in which I should walk” was his poetic way of telling the Lord to teach him everything he needs to know as God guides his steps. He wasn’t just a student trying to gain knowledge. We see both submission and faith in that statement. He knew that he wasn’t going to find a better direction or advice anywhere else, so he laid his life in the hands of the Almighty God.
A Teachable Heart
Do you have a teachable heart? You can pray for God to guide your steps but still not be submitted to the leading of the Spirit. Put your trust in the Lord and watch what happens. It will save you a lot of wasted time and energy. When we lift our needs to the Lord, He takes care of them. It prevents us from running around trying to figure things out. As you trust Him, you will start your soul being lifted up.