Not too long ago, God gave me a set of promises, and as a faithful servant and son of God, I patiently waited. And I waited and I waited.

With time, my focus grew more intent on the promises of God instead of on God Himself, the Provider of those promises. And when God’s promises didn’t manifest in my timetable, I began to question Him. “Why are You taking so long, God?” I asked. “When will You give me what You promised?”

One promise God gave me was my release from prison; however, He never said when that release would happen. I had been under the impression I was going home on June 3, but when I inquired about my gain time, the officials told me I was not entitled to it, and that my release date was September 16. You could say that I wasn’t happy.

I had already waited so long to go home and had focused on a date that turned out to be false hope.

One day after a particularly strong service at the prison chapel, I returned to my dorm and found a book on my bunk. I asked around the dorm to see who had left it. Though my inquiry yielded no results, I decided to read it. The book was called Waiting on God: Strength for Today and Hope for Tomorrow, by Charles F. Stanley. But the most peculiar thing of all was the paper I found inside the book. There was a folded-up piece of paper with these words: “Son, I need you to build a bridge. Here are the tools you will need. See you soon. Love, Dad.” There was also a drawing of a hammer and three nails like the ones used to nail Jesus to the cross.

Believing the book to be a godsend, I read it. The book was amazing. It helped assuage my fears about waiting, but the most wonderful part was the teaching about idols. I learned that focusing on the promise instead of focusing on God the Provider makes the promise become an idol in our lives.

I realized that my focus on the promise of release from prison was improper, and I turned my focus to God, my Provider. I destroyed my calendars and stopped counting my days. I just let God take over, and that’s when things started to happen.

Friend, when you let go and stop worrying about the promise God has already given you, God will crack His knuckles and say, “Okay, now we can get started.”

Focusing on God, my Provider, led to more powerful prayers, and my fellowship with the brothers behind prison walls grew ever so strong. Blessings have yet to stop pouring down.

Whatever you are worrying about, give it to God. Give yourself to God and quit worrying about the wait. Be patient and steadfast in God, and in His perfect timing, He will give you all the things He has promised.

Remember, your promise has already been accomplished in Christ; the world is just playing catch-up.

Photo credit:  Tim Marshall on Unsplash