Ecclesiastes 3:1 There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven … 3:4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance.
Though it happened many years ago, I can still see the rich flame pattern covering the chair where I met with God. Kneeling there, I spit out my pain, “It’s not supposed to be this hard!” I knew what He’d say – “Yes it is.” And there I’d be, left with my crumpled heart.
To my utter surprise, God agreed with me, “You’re right.” “Excuse me!?!” I replied. Then He completed His thought: “You’re right; it’s not supposed to be this hard. But not yet.”
“Not yet.” To my tears, God added deep comfort. “Not yet.” He joined me in my suffering but corrected my timing. “Not yet.”
I had thought we were on opposite sides of the issue, me hating the pain and God supporting it. But no, we agreed. My hatred of pain (and I hate it still) is one way I share God’s heart. His heart broke when Eden died; my heart breaks when I feel Eden’s absence. He and I both long for the time when paradise will return. And it will; God has promised – the new heavens and the new earth await us. But the fulfillment of our longing is, for a while, “not yet.” The time to laugh at the depths of our being and to dance with wild abandon is still to come.
Thank you, Lord, for sharing our sorrow. How good to know that you too hate pain. Thank you for opening your heart and weeping with us. Teach us, Lord, when we’re in pain, to trust the timing of your “not yet.”
Not Yet – Waiting for Paradise [Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4]
© Lynne Fox, 2017