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4 Places You Can Stand in the Waiting between God's PROMISE and His PROVISION


Seven years ago, I received a promise from God that came in a miraculous display. Over a period of a month, eight separate people came to me to give me the SAME urgent word they sensed from God about my life and ministry: 


“You are a father who carries a fatherhood ministry, helping people to experience GOD as a Good Father.”


A few of these prophetic words were quite specific, sharing that I was to write a book or lead a ministry focused on ‘fatherhood.’ The majority came while I was ministering in Israel with people who’d just met me and knew nothing about my life, my history, or my ministry. Most were strangers to me and strangers to each other. This made it all the more “stranger” and impossible to push away. The words were powerful enough, I wrote them down exactly as I received them. Here are a few: 


(2/4/2018): “You have a father’s anointing; a father to the fatherless. I see you standing as a father to many people who do not have one.” 


(2/17/18): “You bring the love and anointing of a father. Simply your presence brings protection and safety that realigns the heart and spine of those you touch. You have learned much about being a son…now, He calls you to even more intentionally take up the call of a father, far beyond your own family.” 


(2/18/2018): “You have a heart an anointing for children; an anointing for fathering. You will parent parents and teach us how to lead our kids. You will write books to teach the church in fathering, both spiritual and physical.”


The night I received that last one, I went back to my hotel room and hit my knees, confessing, “God, I’ve never seen myself as carrying an anointing as a ‘father.’ My dad died when I was young, and I adore my kids, but I have never believed this is a strength I bring. I’m just a guy doing the best I can.”


God replied strongly, “Your calling was attacked from the womb, but I am restoring it. Get ready!”


I repented, fully turning from resistance borne of my own wrestlings with failure, rejection, or inadequacy; and I simply asked Him to have His way. The next morning, I had my first encounter with my now dear friend, Brian Simmons, who is the Lead Translator of the Passion Translation Bible. Walking to our bus (and knowing nothing about me), Brian spoke the following word:


“There is a book about fathering within you. It has to be written…it will share your story and teach the millennials how to be fathers. They need to be fathered.”


Are you kidding me?!? At this very moment, my wife and I were already licensed and expecting our first placement as a foster family, and that morning I agreed with the call to write a book. The promise was overwhelming. 


But here’s the problem.


There is often a detour (or many) that occur between God’s promise and us seeing the fullness of God’s provision being released on earth.


There is often an intentional delay between hearing a word that is a seed from God, and seeing the fruit with your own eyes. 


Often, His promise is followed by :


Waiting

Wondering

Doubting

Wrestling

Revising

Breakthrough

Setback

Disappointment

…Silence


And if we don’t know what He’s up to or how God’s promises work, “hope deferred” can easily make our hearts sick. I came home expecting that in the coming year I would see the fullness of the promise. When I didn’t, I chided myself quietly for what I thought was failure. But God was at work, refining me and taking His dream MUCH higher than I could have imagined. 


The “book” turned into multiple books. The critical one at the center of it all is being sent in its’ final edited form to go to publishers TODAY, after a full seven years of stewardship. From here, there will be more waiting and refining; more elevating as God keeps taking it farther than this father could have imagined. 


In the meantime, God clearly defined my ministry, raised me up as Lead Pastor at my home Church, allowed me to write multiple books, and to write and release original songs declaring His praise. He has established us as a foster family who have watched God restored multiple families back to each other. He has been faithful. 


But there has been a LOT of waiting…and I realize, I’m in really good company:


Abram and Sarai waited 25 years from the Promise to holding Isaac. 


Joseph waited 13 years from the dream to God’s deliverance.


Moses waited 40 years in the desert.


Hannah is believed to have waited 19 years.


David waited 15 years from anointing to coronation (with many days spent running for his life).


Noah waited 120 years, amidst the mocking of his countrymen before the first drop fell from heaven.


Paul waited 3 years in the desert of Arabia between his call and the start of his ministry. 


Anna waited 84 years, an entire lifetime, but in the end, her eyes, like all of those who went before her, saw what God promised.


At the end of Joshua’s life, he spoke these words to the people of Israel about the nature of our Father. Let them go deep:


“Now I am about to go the way of all the earth. You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed.” Joshua 23:14


I speak courage over every place your heart finds itself right now in the waiting. In the space between promise and provision, I offer the following four words of encouragement: 


  1. Choose Jesus above all…especially in the waiting!


There is something BIGGER and more permanent than whatever you are waiting for. Jesus called you to complete intimacy and surrender; to know the love that surpasses knowledge and to overflow in the fount of that love. Don’t hijack intimacy with God in some obsession to see His gift. What a waste that would be. Resolve that your life will be defined by knowing Him! There’s no waiting period on that!


2. Live out the Great Commission NOW — don’t dilute or delay!


The natural byproduct of choosing Jesus above all is that we can’t hold His love to ourselves. As you wait, there might be a million possibilities of “what could be” that desire to overwhelm your mind. I beg you: don’t let what “could be” obscure your eyes from what (and who) God brings before you today. The Gospel is all-encompassing, but it is simple. Radically love those God brings before you without apology, hesitation, or reservation. God will handle the next chapter. 


3. Do the next obedient thing. 


What is the last thing you know with confidence God asked you to do? Do that. If He is up to “more than you could ask or imagine,” it is likely that there will be many miraculous hills, valleys, and unexpected turns ahead…and He doesn’t want you to be the navigator stressing out as you “lean on your own understanding.” If He SAID it, He WILL do it. Don’t go beyond His promise to figure it out or strive to make it happen. Just take the next step He places before you TODAY. It is enough.


4. Don’t Give Up!


“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9


In the end, the “waiting room” seems to be one of God’s favorite places to unveil the fullness of His faithfulness. You are in good company…and you’re being held by a very Good Father who always keeps His promises. I can’t wait to see what God does because you don’t give up!

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From NZ.....Thank you for this timely word. It never ceases to amaze me how God uses the body to help encourage and bring a word in season. Arriving at your website was totally random (not to God obviously) but I have not heard of you before....God, once again, has :). So thank you again for sharing this word - it has really helped and got me back in God's waiting room and living in Him TODAY.

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Being science and medical oriented, I think about the waiting room in a different way. I have been in waiting rooms for births, recoveries, and deaths. Obviously, it is a beautiful experience when something new is birthed. Recoveries require more healing. And deaths, spiritually speaking, make room for something new and fresh. As I think of my own experiences in the waiting room, the death of my will, my understanding, my priorities ... leads to making room for a deeper humility, kinder responses to others, and an acceptance of living in the mystery of God.

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