Is your life boring? Are you stuck in the same place day after day and year after year? Or is God using this time in your life to prepare you for His purpose?
“For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth.”(Ephesians 5:9)
We are not all alike–we were born to different families, had different experiences growing up, and are gifted with different abilities and opportunities. The truth is that not all of us will become famous or rich. We will not all be sought after for interviews on national TV and will not all become socially or politically influential. Yet God has expectations for each and every one of us, as well as a plan.
That plan is our faithfulness, day after day and month after month. Even if there is no apparent payback, we are to keep reading and studying our Bibles, praying to God, and going to Bible study and church because this is how God prepares us for His purposes.
It is regrettable if we are really wasting our life. But if we merely appear to be accomplishing nothing significant in the eyes of the world, yet are faithfully doing what God expects of us, we are allowing Him to prepare us for however He plans to use us. Our concern is that we be ready–that we “…be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.” (2 Timothy 2:21)
Two notable examples in Scripture of God using time and life experiences to prepare someone for extraordinary usefulness are those of Joseph and Moses.
Of all people, Joseph was possibly most at risk of concluding God had forsaken him, when in reality the very opposite was true. He was sold into slavery because he shared his dreams. He proved himself in Potiphar’s house, rising to first in command beneath his master, only to be sent off to jail when he successfully and honorably withstood his master’s wife’s advances. He spent years in prison, forgotten by the world yet again proving himself and rising to a position of oversight. Yet not until God revealed the meaning of Pharoah’s dreams to him and Pharoah raised him up to second in command did God’s master plan become apparent. At any point along the way, Joseph must have been thoroughly befuddled as to why the moment he seemed to be doing well God allowed him to be brought down again.
Moses’ story, although slightly different, also illustrates how God uses time and seemingly adverse circumstances to refine His people and prepare them for usefulness. Born into an underprivileged class, Moses’ life was genuinely at risk. Yet it was his mother’s desperate attempt to save her infant’s life by hiding him in a basket in the Nile that positioned him into the royal court as Pharoah’s daughter’s adopted son. Years later, his righteous desire to exert justice turned to murder and he abandoned everything in order to save his life. For forty subsquent years, God humbled him in the wilderness as he learned his own inadequacy in accomplishing anything of genuine lasting good.
God ultimately used both of these men to accomplish truly great things, yet we seldom realize how long it took for them to be ready for the ultimate roles. Joseph came to power when he was thirty–thirteen whole years after he was sold into slavery; Moses did not lead the Israelites out of Egypt until he was eighty!
So what is God preparing you for? He is the One who knows the specific answer to this question, but it is certain that His immediate desire for each and every one of us is goodness, righteousness and truth–the fruit of His Spirit in us and the result of our faithfulness as we prepare to be useful to Him!
Help me “…be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for you, the Master, prepared for every good work.” Amen.