Not yet.

During a conversation with the Lord about promises unfulfilled, I reminded him of a few things he hasn’t done.

“Not yet.” I added this so he’d know I still trusted him. Unexpectedly those two words satisfied my complaining heart.

When God makes a promise, it’s a done deal. He will do it. If it hasn’t happened yet, that just means I’m getting closer.

Of course, there’s also the possibility it won’t happen in my lifetime. But I can rest, assured it will happen.

Hebrews Chapter 11 opens with this amazing definition of faith. “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (v.1).

Verse two says, “This is what the ancients were commended for.” Next, the writer introduces the names of people whose stories we know—ordinary people God chose for a special role in his mighty plan: Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob.

“All these people were still living in faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised, they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance…” (v. 13).

They belonged to a prestigious club, the “Not Yet Club.” Did I see your name on the membership roster?

I’m honored to be a member of the “Not Yet Club,” hobnobbing with distinguished folks who received promises and await fulfillment.

I’m honored to be a member of the “Not Yet Club,” hobnobbing with distinguished folks who received promises and await fulfillment. . Click To Tweet

Being honest, I must admit this wasn’t my first conversation with the Lord about promises on hold. Once I questioned him about a promise I’d relied on and vented my frustration over his delay. He responded, “I didn’t say when.”

You’re wondering…did he ever come through? Yes!

Another time, I mentioned how long I’d been trusting his promise and grumbled that the years were slipping by. “We’re running out of time,” I said. “Do you know how old I’ll be next birthday?” He said, “As a matter of fact, I know exactly how old you are.”

He knows how to silence my whining.

You’re wondering…did he ever come through? Yes!

Later in Hebrews 11, Moses shows up. We learn that in difficult circumstances, “he persevered because he saw him who is invisible” (v. 27).

Remember my hard-learned truth: focus determines rest. Moses persevered because he saw him who is invisible. Focus! He kept going forward, resting on the promise of God.

And that’s where I find rest—the promises of God.

Let me repeat: when God makes a promise, it’s a done deal. I can rest, assured it will happen, even if I don’t live to see it. He always comes through.

When God makes a promise, it’s a done deal. I can rest, assured it will happen, even if I don’t live to see it. He always comes through. Click To Tweet

Friend, are you waiting? Don’t despair! Be encouraged by people who knew how to rest. Moses on the journey with God’s people to the land of promise. Joseph in prison. Daniel in the lion’s den. Shadrach, Meshach, an Abednego in the furnace.

Hebrews 11 ends with a long list of people who held on to faith in uncertainty.

I’m learning…but my name doesn’t qualify for a spot next to Abraham. Remember that he waited twenty-five years for God to fulfill his promise of a son. But he came through. Then God asked him to sacrifice that son on an altar! Abraham prepared to do the unthinkable. How could he? You’ve read this, haven’t you?

“By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, ‘It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.’ Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death” (Hebrews 11:17-19).

God intervened and provided a ram for the sacrifice. Abraham’s willingness to obey declared his devotion.

During my journalism career, I interviewed many celebrities. Abraham lived long before my time, but if I’d had the opportunity to interview him, one question would have satisfied my curiosity.

“You were certain if you obeyed God and he let you go through with the sacrifice of your son, that he could raise Isaac from the dead to fulfill his promise to make you the father of a great nation. How did you develop such a faith?”

I don’t know how he would answer, but this might come close.

“When God called me on mission, I made a decision to follow him. The longer we walked together, the more I grew to trust him. My faith enlarged in circumstances where I saw no purpose and had nothing to go on but the sheer word of God.”

Been there, done that?

Circumstances need not disturb our rest. Indeed, they are the rich soil in which faith grows.

“You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord, is the Rock eternal” (Isaiah 26:3-4).

Keep your gaze on him who is invisible! Keep living in faith!

Please tell me what you’re learning in the “Not Yet Club.” And share this with friends needing encouragement today!

© Dianne Barker 2019

*Scriptures from NIV

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