“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline” (2 Timothy 1:7 NLT).
When God gives an idea — a rhema — he gives it in three parts.
First, he says what he’s going to do, then he says how he’s going to do it, and then he gives you the timing.
The biggest mistake people make is getting the first part but forgetting the other two. We take God’s idea and go out and try to do it as if he doesn’t care how it should be done. We try to do it our way, and we usually fall flat. We don’t know the timing, so we try to rush things.
Three years before we started Saddleback Church, I tried to start another church. I was in Riverside, California, and God had spoken to my heart that I would start a church. So I rented Canyon Hills High School and was getting ready. About a month before we were going to start, God said, “Right idea, but it’s the wrong place and wrong time. Don’t do it, because I’m not in it.” So I canceled my plans, went back to Fort Worth, and worked on a master’s degree for three years. After that God said, “Now, here’s where you’re going,” and he put me in the Saddleback Valley, where we planted Saddleback Church.
How do you know God’s timing? God starts bringing all the pieces together. But you have to wait for it! Then, when God says, “Go,” you move into action. At that point, you have to take a step of faith.
Taking a step of faith may seem impossible for you today because you’re facing a big problem. Maybe you’ve got some difficult decisions to make. In 1975, I had some major health problems that had sent me to both a heart specialist and a neurosurgeon. I was fearful, discouraged, and depressed. One morning, a stranger called me and said, “I don’t know you, but I understand you’re having some health problems. I called because I really feel like God wanted me to share this verse with you.” Through that man, God gave me a rhema and reminded me how he was working in my life.
That verse was 2 Timothy 1:7, and it’s a verse some of you need right now. God’s promise to you is this: “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline” (NLT).
God wants to work in all of our lives — that’s a logos. But he also wants to work in your life with a rhema. Does God still do miracles today? You bet he does. But he does them in his timing, according to his sovereign will. Believe that God is working in your life, claim his promise, and move forward with his power!
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Talk It Over
- Think of a time when God gave you a rhema — a desire or command to do something. What was your reaction? What did you do next?
- Why is it difficult for you to wait on God’s timing?
- What big problem are you facing today that is keeping you from moving forward in faith? Pray, and ask God to give you faith to trust in his power so you can take a step of faith.