Need an appointment? Dental, doctor, hair, car, pediatrician? I’ve needed an appointment right away several times.
“A while ago, I attended a women’s function on Saturday morning. Cookies, fruit, and bagels were available for eating. I grabbed a bagel and a cookie. I cracked my tooth eating that cookie. All I could think about was a dental appointment.”
Appointments can be disappointing.
Some require deductibles–taking extra cash from you.
Some incite fear before you show up. What will my diagnosis be? How many people will interview me?
Some of us lead busy lives. Appointments take “time” from us.
Some of them can only be scheduled at the time of an important event we’d already committed to attend.
I was disappointed when I cracked my tooth. My thoughts at that time, “doggonit, now I’ve got to take time for this.
Another time, I recall scheduling a hair appointment on the same day a revival started. Like everybody else, I wanted my hair hooked for the revival. The stylist called on the same day, a few hours before the appointment, to cancel out. I was disappointed.
I recall another incident where I had gone to my appointment and it had to be rescheduled because my scheduled time was spent on a previous client. I was disappointed. My point….life’s appointments often leave us disappointed. But so does divine appointments.
Needless to say, some Christians have become disappointed with divine appointments and still are. Here are some biblical examples:
Joseph was stripped of his coat and cast into a pit by family members.
Hannah, a barren woman, was stripped of her dignity when she was buffeted by her adversary, Penninah, because she was barren.
Job was stripped of his family (children), livestock..even endured a physical attack for a time because satan wanted to make God look bad.
Baby, God had everything to do with all three of the above attacks! Not the author of them but often our experiences are divinely ochestrated for this reason among others….”to drive us to closer to Him via scheduled appointments with Him. Honey, when you are in trouble, you will RUN to God and stay there! Needless to say, that’s what He wants! Time, alone, with us!
Some of our issues were set by God for a longer endurance than what we’d imagined or desired because He knows the derived benefits. Others are set primarily to achieve His purposes! Some are set for both. Joseph’s issues were set by God, Himself, for the good of preserving His chosen people in future days! Job’s situations were set by God for proof to satan and others in Job’s future that His servants remain true to Him. Hannah’s issue was divinely appointed by God for purposes of rearing a prophet devoted to His services at the right time which was in Israel’s future!
God always has a valid reason when there’s a delay in intervention. Still we succumb to disappointment. But He’s okay with that because disappointment often provokes achievement! When you’re seriously disappointed, you will:
Put up the dukes and fight your way out of a situation. The violent one will take what belongs to them by force. The natural benefit…you get what you fought for AND the spiritual benefits…gratefulness to God is expressed with fervor and dedication to Him soars to another dimension! That’s what God wants!
No doubt, we all desire to live the blessed life! With Christ in our lives, we are already blessed and highly favored by God but He has other blessings for His people that He desires to shower upon them, naturally and spiritually! God’s appointment to grand blessings can come sooner than later. When they are delayed, ask these questions, “Am I the culprit for the delay? Is my conduct and behavior pattern conducive to God working on my behalf? Do I have an attitude with God because I am disappointed? Have I ceased seeking Him for direction? Have I ceased showing up to my regularly scheduled appointment time with Him? There’s a reason for disappointments. Assess them, but continue to show up to your devotional appointments! Perseverance means a lot to God!
GOD’S SWEET MEANT
Christians have often asked God, during a trying situation, what is meant by the trial. Prior to a response, they wonder, “Is this meant to get my attention ….slow me down? In some cases, yes, trials capture our attention. But one sure thing, that situation may not feel good but it was meant for good! Let me give you another focus for God’s “meant” ….by faith, see it as a sweet ordeal. The good that will be derived from God’s allowances of situations will put a smile on your face over and over again in your future!
When God’s not responding to your issues, it’s all good. His circumstantial appointments tend to grow us in spiritual maturity and intimacy with Him. Prolonged communication with God due to problems….baby, that’s a really good thing! But here’s the sweet “meant” of “appointment to disappointment!” What the enemy meant for evil, God meant it for good! How sweet is that? That disappointment was meant to be a silver lining in your life!” It was meant to bless your life! Somebody else’s life, too! Some are successful life coaches right now, not because of education, but because of God not intervening immediately into their situations to give them experiences! How sweet is that! Just like a mint sweetens bad breath for the mo-ment, so God’s appoint-ments sweeten our lives against disappointments because sweet memories linger past future “could-be” moments of disappointments!
The sweet thing about Joseph’s appointment to the pit is that it was meant for the future preservation of God’s chosen people! What he endured earlier pales when he thinks of all the sweetness from what he endured! Read Genesis chapters, 37 and 39-50…baby, you see nothing but sweetness galore as a result of one bad experience after another!
The sweet thing about Hannah’s situation is that it was meant for her to draw closer to God and make a vow to Him through barrenness that would change the course of Israel’s history. She birthed a powerful, obedient prophet as a result of barrenness and prayer.
The sweet thing about Job’s circumstances is that Job remained faithful to God in the midst of a spiritual battle that Job was not aware of. Satan battled God for the life of Job. Job wouldn’t curse God.
As a Christian, you and I don’t get to rule over times and seasons divinely appointed by God. But when situations become desperate, you can rest assured, you will get an immediate response!
AN APPOINTED TIME (Part 2)
God has an appointment scheduler tool for each of us. Some of us have a huge problem when our appointments collide with His. In Hannah’s case, she wanted a child for the longest; it happened in God’s appointed time! Some of my single sisters, for the longest, have desired to be married by a set time! Some became discouraged and still are. Others have this testimony because they let God set the appointment…..”God is always right on time!” For sure, some of them with testimonies had disappointing moments after having to go to God over and over again for strength to endure but they persevered! The Bible does say, “there’s a time and purpose for everything in our lives.” When you are a devoted Christian, God works according to His time and purpose! There’s not a thing you can do about it when you want to be in the will of God!
Appointments are a way of life, right? I’ve had appointments where I rushed to get to them because of my own delay in leaving the house. Rushing put me at risk for a bad accident just as rushing into marriage puts one at risk for a bad divorce. You don’t want to miss your appointment with destiny’s blessings because you rushed ahead of God. If you have to set an appointment with God because you’re getting impatient, set one as often as necessary. He’s appointed you to blessings not disasters! See Proverbs 28:20.
It’s a bitter pill to swallow when God delays His arrival but His delay is a divine set-up for bountiful blessings, naturally and spiritually! That natural appointment was a divine appointment to serve you with a new revelation about God which would result in a new level of worship, a new level of praise, a new level of joy and more! A young lady on a popular TV network gave a testimony about a regularly scheduled doctor’s appointment she went to that resulted in a negative report. BUT, because she was regularly meeting her prayer appointment times, she would not accept the doctor’s report. She stood on God’s report that she would be alright and when she went back to the doctor, they found no cancerous cells in her body! Honey, don’t think for one moment God didn’t come back with a stream of blessings to compensate her for passing that test and temptation to charge God foolishly! Bottom line, God does, purposely, appoint Believers to tests and trials. 1 Peter 1:6 says, “Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations.” 1 Peter 5:10 says this, “…after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” We have our moments of heaviness, struggles, and sufferings but not without God’s allowances ultimately to the life and character that produces blessings!
God’s appointments are for our development in Him! I recall, when after graduating from a college many years ago, I wanted a job right away. At that time, I was a newly born-again Christian praying to land a good job and when it didn’t happen right away, I became discouraged. I felt God wasn’t listening….doesn’t answer prayer… and He was not a true God. They were thoughts of disappointment. But, oh, years later, I came to understand perfectly why God delayed His response to my earlier prayers. In terms of action, He had a plan! But that’s what Jeremiah 29:11 says…….”For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future! God had His eyes on my future! He had a BETTER plan for me that certainly worked for me in my future in many ways!
He took His time in responding. Why?
First…He understood perfectly, I was a new convert in Christ not ready to handle the environment of the first real job I would get without spending more quality time with Him building myself up spiritually. “I got an offer to work at the Police Department and I said, “yes” to the offer prior to knowing the working environment. I was just ready to make money! My environment? I worked around lots of men coming and going…you figure the rest!” The Lord knew I needed more time with Him to be able to overcome some of the temptations I would endure.
Second, my final and long-term job would be a Federal Government job but I needed to start working with the Federal government at the right time! The Police Department sustained me until that time! When I look back on the beginning years of my employment history, there’s so much sweetness about it that I know without a doubt God was working on my behalf with His eyes on a way to make my ending employment history as sweet as can be 35 years later! I came to realize that the timing for both jobs was so on point until even today, it blows my mind how everything panned out at the RIGHT time and for the right circumstances! I retired not having to wait for age and years to catch up with each other as some of my federal buddies are now doing…..waiting. Believe me, they are not happy about it. AND, I retired at an early age….under the most desirable Federal retirement system! God’s timing is the best!!!
APPOINTMENT WITH BLESSINGS
Christian friend, God’s appointed you to goodness and blessings! Don’t be one who never makes it to His scheduled appointment because of discouragement, ultimately making bad decisions. Don’t be one to turn your back on Him because YOU were not willing to allow Him to work according to His wisdom and timing. If you can endure the process, the appointed blessings will manifest! Waiting on God is ALL good! Matter of fact, be encouraged by this thought, “unanswered prayers are not unheard prayers.” God just has a SET TIME OF MANIFESTATION! So, deal with the spirit of impatience. You’re not waiting on God, He’s waiting on you to show up to His appointments! Impatience will not speed His set time…most likely delay it. The children of Israel, out of murmuring and complaining, took 40 long years to get to Canaan, the promised land, and many of them didn’t make it. It was only meant to be a few days’ journey.
Jacob told an angel, after a wrestling match till daybreak, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.” Genesis 32:22-32. Believer, hold out for the appointed blessings that await you! They’re grand blessings, baby! Remember Daniel, whose prayer was answered but delayed in manifestation? Read Daniel 10:12. Daniel’s prayers were heard 21 days prior to the angelic informing him he was held up in getting an answer to him. Your prayers are heard, too, the appointed time just may not be yet! When your prayer is held up for whatever reason, Christian friend, I pray you hold up mentally, spiritually, and faithfully cause no evil spirit can deny you what God has for you!
AN APPOINTMENT WITH SUFFERING AND DEATH
That doesn’t sound appealing but remember this, “Jesus learned obedience by the things He suffered…afterwards, He died and was exalted to the right hand of the throne of God. We are not immune from suffering but God gives them purpose. Our pattern of life is similar to Christ….suffering, obedience, death, exaltation.
Some reading this have had dreams almost to the point of realization when suddenly, while on the brink of achieving those dreams, trouble reared its head altering the course of their steps. Now, instead of going to favorable appointments, it became necessary to schedule dreaded appointments. It’s disappointing. Christian friend, you and I have been appointed to death. The things we suffer have the potential to accomplish it. Before destiny’s blessings, God will help us work on dying to self. Apostle Paul did write in Romans 6:4, “therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so, we also should walk in newness of life.” That’s His purpose; He uses our own experiences even the ones we create.
It sounds ludicrous to even speak of God appointing us to sufferings. He’s not the author of them but He does allow the commonality of physical conditions and other predicaments that are often consequences to bring us to disappointment for purposes of drawing nigh to Him. He will delay an answer to prayer because of the benefit of prolonged afflictions namely that they draw us to His bleeding side. Remember Apostle Paul and the thorn in his flesh….he prayed about it but that thorn had a purpose.
Let me leave you with these thoughts to ponder and remember:
God has “set times!” They are always the right time!
YOUR APPOINTMENTS, YOUR DISAPPOINTMENTS ALL WORK TOGETHER TO BE THE OINTMENT THAT’S SMEARED OVER YOUR LIFE AND WHICH ULTIMATELY BECOMES THE ANOINTMENT THAT ALLOWS YOU TO BECOME VISIBLY USEFUL TO GOD!
I heard this from the mouth of a well-known preacher, “God will create a problem to solve a problem.” He wants you to experience Him in a real way!
My final thought to you is to don’t give up during times of disappointments, keep going, keep walking, keep the momentum cause any moment now you will walk out of your wilderness into your Canaan land…that land that flows with milk and honey! Momentum is the key! This is what God meant by an allowance of disappointments….to appoint you to a promotion to the King’s table where you are bountifully fed with good things in all areas, “……no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly! Psalms 84:11. Hold up, hold out, and God will not withhold from you! Keep walking, keep moving forward, my friend, God’s blessings will soon track you down, run you over, and overtake you in unimaginable ways!
Don’t let disappointment win over what was meant to be…..a running facet of blessings you can’t even fantasize!
“God never foreordains an evil event without a good purpose.” (John Frame)