Have you ever questioned God’s timing?

About 8 years ago I got a phone call on a Friday morning. It was from our social worker, and the conversation went something like this:

Me: Hello?

Patty: Hi Jeff it’s Patty.  How are you?

Me: Good and you?

Patty: What are you guys doing tonight?

Me: Normal stuff.  We’re going on a date.

Patty: Well, it may be the best date of your life…

She then told me of a 3-day-old baby boy who was just brought into foster care and was waiting for us to pick him up. 

We had been matched with him, but she was waiting for more information from his social worker and would call me back. 

So I waited. 

I fought the urge to call my wife Michelle for almost an hour. 

Finally, I couldn’t hold it in any longer and called her at work.  My words were cautious but hopeful and I promised to call again as soon as I heard back.

Eventually, Patty called me back and confirmed we could pick up baby Brandon that afternoon.

For us, this was the culmination of almost two years of waiting to bring a child home.

Michelle promptly quit her job (they knew this could happen at any time and were very supportive of us), and we headed out to the hospital.

It was a whirlwind of emotions and experience. We brought baby Brandon home and expected to start the process of adoption once the courts terminated parental rights.

We bonded immediately with this perfect baby boy. We nicknamed him “baby bird” because he was always hungry and would open his mouth for the bottle.

Then, just 6 days into our new life as parents, something unexpected happened.

We got another call, but this time it was not a good one.

There had been a court hearing that day and Brandon’s biological father showed up. (We were initially told they did not know who the father was). They did a quick background check and ordered that Brandon be given to him the next day.

We were crushed. It still chokes me up to write or talk about it. Our family and friends came over to comfort us and just be there for us.

The next day we placed him in another social worker’s car and said our goodbyes. It happened way too fast. My wife and I just hugged and cried. 

We didn’t yet understand why this all happened and how God would redeem that pain.

But ultimately, He did.

Just over a year later, we got another call, again on a Friday morning. Patty shared the situation with us, which was nearly identical to Brandon’s, except this was a baby girl.

Michelle and I had decided beforehand that we would say yes to another placement, even if it meant we were ultimately heartbroken again. We knew that these babies needed care and love, even if just for a few days, and we were going to give it to them.

So, we went through the same rollercoaster of emotions, and set out on the same freeway, in the same direction to pick up our baby girl. 

I believe God let us go through the previous experience with Brandon so that we would learn how to love without expectation, and so that we would understand that God’s timing is perfect.

And this time, we sensed that the situation would be different.

We brought Mariah home and 19 months later we finalized her adoption. 

I may tell more about this story in the coming days, but I wanted to share this for a reason.

Often, the feedback I get from people who are not satisfied in their lives centers around this subject of timing.

They are either trying to slow things down or speed them up.

But we don’t have control over time, or the timing of our experiences and opportunities.

All we have control over is our preparedness when those things come our way, so that we can make the most of them.

David said in Psalm 40:1 “I waited patiently for the LORD; he inclined to me and heard my cry.” I encourage you to read the entire Psalm to see the blessings David received for his patience. 

Here are just a few of them that he recounts:

  • “He drew me up from the pit of destruction”
  • He “set my feet upon a rock
  • “He put a new song in my mouth”
  • God delivered him and showed him mercy
  • He gave David joy in doing God’s will
  • He let the Word of God penetrate David’s heart

There is blessing ahead for all who wait patiently for The Lord.

My encouragement to you today is to press on in all the work that God has called you to do, and to patiently wait and prepare for the fruit of your efforts to come. 

In God’s perfect timing, I promise you will see great blessings.

Your brother in Christ,