Has God given you a vision for your life, your family, or your community and beyond? Does it feel like there is one set back after another and that the vision will never come to fulfillment?
At these times, it can seem like someone has turn out the light. Instead of flipping the light switch back on by remembering God’s countless promises and His faithfulness, do you stumble around in the dark wondering, “Did God really say that?”
Oswald Chambers gives a hint of why the vision is slow in coming...
“ ‘Though it tarries, wait for it . . .’ (Habakkuk 2:3). We cannot bring the vision to fulfillment through our own efforts, but must live under its inspiration until it fulfills itself...At the very beginning we saw the vision but did not wait for it. We rushed off to do our practical work…” (Utmost for His Highest, March 11).
When the vision is slow in coming, we may be tempted to take matters into our own hands.
Chambers continues, “and once the vision was fulfilled we could no longer even see it.” It reminds me of a sermon illustration that I heard recently. Mice were scurrying around looking for cheese, their noses to the ground. They could smell it, but they couldn’t find it. The hunk of cheese towered above them. It was so close to them, they bumped into it; it was so big that they couldn’t see it.
I wonder if St. Paul was inspired by "scurrying creatures" in his prison cell as he penned his letter to the Colossians: “Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective” (Colossians 3:2 The Message).
Jesus said, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand” (Mark 1:15), but because they couldn't "see" it, many didn't believe.
In other words, the vision may have already been fulfilled, but we just don’t see it because of our unbelief. We have our noses to the ground, looking only at what is humanly possible. This is one sure way of “switching off the light”! Or it may be that the vision has been fulfilled in a way that we didn’t expect. Many expected Jesus to setup an earthly kingdom by force, but instead He died a humiliating and painful death on a Cross, providing for us an eternal kingdom.
Chambers concludes, “Waiting for a vision that ‘tarries’ is the true test of our faithfulness to God.” Even though the time of fulfillment is in God’s hands, we have a part to play. Resolve to “look up” in faith…and turn on the light, thanking God for what He has already done and that in Him all things are possible!