If you’ve followed Christ for any amount of time, you’ve probably realized that God works according to His own timing—not ours. It’s easy to trust this when things are going well; however, when crisis strikes, we can become angry, hurt, confused, and even bitter. We can ask how God can possibly delay in fulfilling what we perceive as our desperate needs.
We see this desperation in the story of Jairus. Jesus is following Jairus to his house to heal his deathly ill daughter, when someone else puts a wrench in the plan. Let’s look at Mark 5:32-34:
“And He looked around to see the woman who had done this. But the woman fearing and trembling, aware of what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. And He said to her, ‘Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace and be healed of your affliction.’”
Jesus delayed His own journey to Jairus’s house for this woman. Can you imagine what Jairus must have felt? Maybe some of the same things you’ve felt when, in response to your ardent prayers, God said, “Wait.” We see what happens next in verses 35-36:
“While He was still speaking, they came from the house of the synagogue official, saying, ‘Your daughter has died; why trouble the Teacher anymore?’ But Jesus, overhearing what was being spoken, said to the synagogue official, ‘Do not be afraid any longer, only believe.’”
The worst had happened. God had delayed His miracle-working, and Jairus’s daughter had died. Jesus knew that stopping for the woman would result in this outcome, and He still chose to do it. He still chose to say, “Wait.” What we learn from this is powerful.
Delay is not always the devil. Delay is not denial. Just because what we want doesn’t happen as we want doesn’t mean God’s still not at work. The hard part about faith is trusting God’s goodness and faithfulness, even when the very worst happens. When God says, “Wait,” it’s not because He doesn’t care about you; it’s not because He’s not hurting with you. It’s simply because He has something better. If we can believe that, we can keep walking with Him, no matter what.
Dr. Derek Grier