Acts 24 ends with these words, "When two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus, but because Felix wanted to grant a favor to the Jews, he left Paul in prison." Two years! Two years talking with Felix about the Lord with no apparent fruit. Two years of little freedom. Two years not able to travel and preach. Two years with no progress toward Rome.
I get impatient. I want to know what decision I need to make, where I need to go, what I should be doing next. Waiting is agony when we feel like we're stuck in limbo. But just as God never stops being God when things feel out of control, so He never stops being God when things feel stalled. God is not in a hurry.
The older I get the more I should understand that, and in some ways I do, but I also see that the older I get the narrower my options become. A ministry that didn't want me in my 20's, because of too little experience, may not want me now because of too few years of ministry left. An opportunity that might open up if I had a little more education, will no longer be available by the time I can get that education. An opportunity to talk to my neighbor about Christ may never come about because he's got cancer, or she's got heart disease, and may die unexpectedly.
We are often driven by the shortness of time. Don't Blink is a Country Western song talking about how short life is. Preachers often use the danger of lost opportunities as a motivation for obedience and evangelism. There is truth in that, so why does God have Paul sitting in Caesarea for two years? Doesn't He know time is short?
Apparently, God is not in a hurry. He is not bound by all the limitations we can see and imagine. Paul, the apostle to the Gentiles, seems to be okay sitting in a Caesarean prison. Perhaps we need to spend less time worrying about time and decisions and more time focused on the God who is not in a hurry.
Father, I confess my lack of patience and my anxiety over the future. I never want to be lazy and lethargic, but neither do I want to get ahead of you. By your grace, lead me clearly and intentionally, and may I rest in you and your timetable even when it doesn't seem to make sense to me.