It’s a “New Year.” So many resolutions, goals, preparations for moving forward. So, why did I title this blog, “LATE?” Several words were being tossed around in my mind, and since we just had a day filled with several “time sensitive” happenings – for some reason I kept focusing on “don’t be late!” As I usually do, I looked up verses with the word, “late.” Nothing really focused about being on “time,” but this verse from Psalm stuck out to me:
Psalm 127:2 In vain do you get up early and put off going to bed, working hard to earn a living; for he provides for his beloved, even when they sleep. (CJB)
It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep. (ESV)
I’m going to give a few details of our day and then tie this verse into at the end… It’s kind of a story and got a little long, but I hope you can see how GOD put all the pieces together.
We started the day with my son having a supposed soccer practice (it was scheduled last night and had rained hard all night long) and I was supposed to have my hair done. Both were on the same side of town, so we traveled together to get to our respective appointments “on time.” It isn’t fun to “be late.” Since it was raining, we assumed that practice might be canceled, but had not heard for sure, and my hair appointment was scheduled for an hour before practice. We found out after arriving that practice was canceled, which we were actually thankful for once we returned home.
We also were planning to travel to the capitol of Cyprus, which is two hours away from us, to pick up a child’s passport and spend some time together as a family for holiday fun. We thought we had “time” to get there, but when my son and I returned to the house we found out we needed to leave pretty much immediately because we needed to be there by 14:00 (for those on military time) and it was already just after 11. We wanted to plan plenty of time so we didn’t feel rushed. We didn’t want to “be late.” Had my son’s practice not been cancelled we would have had to RUSH.
On our way we needed food. The place we wanted to eat was not able to do an order over the phone because of “technical difficulties” and we were trying to sort how to get gas and food without losing too much time. Details all worked together and all was done within a 15 minute time frame and we were back on the road.
Travel was smooth (in spite of rain in a few places) and we arrived about 15 minutes early. We then had some down time and went to Old Town to walk around in the sunshine and let the children spend some of their holiday money. Since dinner was going to be needed later, we decided to book a table for food and then head to the mall. Once again we had a “time” to be somewhere and didn’t want to be “late.”
At the mall my son made a purchase of a jacket with a zipper. He was so excited to finally have a new one and loved the color. It was the last red one in the size he needed. As we left the mall and went to our restaurant to eat, he tried to zip up the zipper and… it broke.
It happened in the car as we were traveling to our “booked table” for dinner. Traffic was horrific. We had some heavy rain. We missed one turn and added a bit more time. I wasn’t worried about being “late” and yet it was in the back of my mind, but we made it with time to spare.
We ate dinner and I could tell my son was frustrated and disappointed. He called the store to find out about returning it and they closed at 8, which we didn’t think we could do since we wanted to enjoy dinner. Supposedly they wanted him to return it there even though there was the same store at our mall close to us. Once again we were on a “time schedule” and hoping not to be “late.”
God worked out all the details and he was able to exchange it. We made it back to the mall with about 5 minutes to spare. The manager helped him find one with a zipper that worked, and even though it was a different color, my son realized that the blue he got was probably better than the red.
On our way back (a two hour drive!) I was reflecting on all the things that had happened. I realized that God had everything timed out correctly and allowed us to get where we needed to go without being “late.” He even took care of the rain during the times we were outside.
So, how does all of this story and details of my day tie into the verse I put above? When I read the verse above I realized that I put extra stress on myself several times throughout the day because I was worried about “being late.”
What I should have done is “RESTED IN HIM” and let HIM take the wheel to get me where I needed to go. I just needed to TRUST that HE was leading and guiding and that when HE was in control then exactly what needed to happen would happen.
The verse above is clear about this. When we get up early and go to bed late – we work and work in vain. We “work hard to make a living.” This doesn’t mean we can be a sloth and not work at all, or be slow in our work. Everything in Proverbs is about being a hard worker and doing things with honesty and not to be lazy. However, we often times take things into our own hands and make plans, or work – work – work to try and make things happen, when really we need to STOP and focus on HIM and let HIM work while we sleep.
Everything about the verse above is about giving everything to HIM. Our FATHER wants to provide for us, we just have to let Him! He wants to bless us, we just have to let Him!
As you enter a new year, are you going to keep working and working in vain? Are you going to “wake up early” and “go to bed late” just because you “need to stay ahead?”
I challenge us all to prioritize our time and make sure that what we are doing is what HE wants us to do. As we all know, when HE is in control than we don’t have to worry about being late because HE is always “on time.” As I head to bed tonight I will GIVE THANKS that HE took charge today in spite of my worries, and hopefully do better next time. I will let HIM provide as I sleep because HE does that best.
Love and blessings,