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So many times in past situations I caught glimpses of promises on the horizon and I in turn did everything in MY power to make it happen…NOW. I was a master manipulater of time, resources, and people, and a very impatient one at that. Without fail, every single time, someone would get hurt in my unwillingness to go through the process.

process4There absolutely has to be opposition before opportunity (thank you Susan Brogan) and I always went against the grain, never doing what I was called to do, which was to wait…patiently. There is that word again. “Patient. Patient. Patient. Just do what I have asked you to do RIGHT NOW Julie and be PATIENT, even if it doesn’t make sense.”

Genesis 16:1-10 (NIV) – Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had borne him no children. But she had an Egyptian slave named Hagar; 2 so she said to Abram, “The Lord has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my slave; perhaps I can build a family through her.” Abram agreed to what Sarai said. 3 So after Abram had been living in Canaanten years, Sarai his wife took her Egyptian slave Hagar and gave her to her husband to be his wife. 4 process2He slept with Hagar, and she conceived. When she knew she was pregnant, she began to despise her mistress. 5 Then Sarai said to Abram, “You are responsible for the wrong I am suffering. I put my slave in your arms, and now that she knows she is pregnant, she despises me. May the Lord judge between you and me.” 6 “Your slave is in your hands,” Abram said. “Do with her whatever you think best.” Then Sarai mistreated Hagar; so she fled from her. 7 The angel of the Lord found Hagar near a spring in the desert; it was the spring that is beside the road to Shur. 8 And he said, “Hagar, slave of Sarai, where have you come from, and where are you going?” “I’m running away from my mistress Sarai,” she answered. 9 Then the angel of the Lord told her, “Go back to your mistress and submit to her.” 10 The angel added, “I will increase your descendants so much that they will be too numerous to count.”

process3Sarai (later Sarah) jumped ahead of her promise and people were truly hurt in the process. The blame game instinctively ensued because, HEY, didn’t Adam and Eve start that crazy train rolling? Hagar then had the first of TWO desert wilderness experiences. Her first instinct was to run when the heat came on. I’m sure she didn’t fully enjoy being given over to the husband of a woman she loved and looked up to and served everyday. Wouldn’t you be upset, being prostituted out for someone else’s selfish gain? Sarai proceeded to take matters into her own hands, interfered with God’s plan, then refused to admit her error. And Hagar, I’m pretty sure, didn’t like to be told to go back the way she came and have her own time of waiting in submission.

Hosea 2:14-15 (NIV) – “Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the wilderness and speak tenderly to her. 15 There I will give her back her vineyards, and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. There she will respond as in the days of her youth, as in the day she came up out of Egypt.”

process1I’m not going to lie. I completely see the big picture here and I am taking heed to the warning placed before me. I can so easily relate to both women in their struggle to find inner peace. I need to work on MY attitude while in the waiting, trust that God knows best and His timing alone is impeccable, remember His promises when the temptation to flee when the enemy comes a knocking, and rely solely on His voice to lead me to the proper door. He always provides a way out and the process is just that…a way to get to the intended destiny God has for us.

Joshua 1:9 (NIV) – “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”