The Timing Of God

Southaven, Ms

By: Mike Upchurch

I have preached this sermon from pulpits before, but I thought it might be good to condense it and present it again here in a column. There’s always something to glean from revisiting a topic the Holy Spirit has made relevant.

In the third Chapter of Acts, we find the familiar account of a lame beggar being healed as Peter and John were entering the Temple that day. Significant to note is the fact that this beggar was at the Temple gate every day. Also significant is the fact he was about 40 years old and had been lame from birth.

The fact that he was at the Temple every day for years is critical. This means that this man had been there during Jesus’ ministry. It means that each time Jesus would enter the Temple in Jerusalem, He would pass by this man, yet no mention was made of there being any conversation or interaction between them at all. Jesus’ focus during His three years in ministry was to heal and restore the sick and the broken, and to deliver the possessed, yet for some reason He made no effort to heal this man at all. Therein lies the “teaching moment” for us.

This lame man had to have known who Jesus was. It’s doubtful that anyone in Jerusalem did not know of Him and the miracles He had performed. And I’m sure the thought crossed his mind when he would see Jesus that perhaps He would heal him!  And when this poor beggar heard Jesus had been crucified, I wonder if his heart sank as he realized there would be no hope of his being healed?  I wonder if he thought all was lost for him?

Fast forward then to that wondrous day when a simple fisherman would be responsible for a paralyzed beggar walking and leaping into the Temple through faith in the name of Jesus!  Peter’s command brought forth a miracle still worthy of mention two thousand years later…..

“But Peter said, “I do not possess silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you: In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene—walk!” And seizing him by the right hand, he raised him up; and immediately his feet and his ankles were strengthened. With a leap he stood upright and began to walk; and he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God.”‭‭Acts‬ ‭3:6-8

For me, the greater story within that story is this; Jesus knew this man needed healing, but while on earth He ignored him. And for good reason!  Had Jesus healed this man during that time, it might have garnered a mention in a verse. But because a mere mortal man was involved in his healing after the Resurrection, thousands came to salvation (Acts 4:4). Now that’s important; it’s the timing of this miracle that ministers to me. Here’s what I take away from this…..The Father will deliver you in HIS time, not yours!

When it looks like it’s over to us, God has another plan!  When our deliverance doesn’t come the way we thought it should, God has another plan!  When God doesn’t answer your prayer the way you asked, He has another plan!  And when the Lord doesn’t answer at the time you thought He should, He has another plan!

Though the beggar’s hopes may have been dashed when he learned Jesus had been crucified, God had already chosen another moment in time for his miracle.

His ways are not our ways!  His thoughts are above our thoughts! When it looks like the answers to your prayers didn’t come to pass, God has another way set aside. You mustn’t lose faith!  Just because He doesn’t respond according to your plan at the time you think He should, doesn’t mean He isn’t going to respond!  Look at the beggar’s miracle and realize God has the means and moment already established for you!  It’s the perfect timing of God that is our hope!  It’s not IF He will answer us, but rather we can look at this story and know that it’s WHEN He will answer us; and He WILL answer us!  But it will be in His timing, and according to His plan!  That should be the basis for the faith we need that will move mountains in our life!

And that’s the way I see it. 

Pastor Mike