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God's Perfect Timing
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By Trish West

Sometimes in life, the timing of something is in such a way that you are left thinking that if it hadn't happened in that particular sequence - you could have missed out on something great. An unexpected and frustrating change in flights home, gives you the opportunity to fit in a last minute visit with a loved one who doesn't make it to the next time you're able to visit. A baby's premature arrival is stressful but if it was born 'on time' Dad would have been out of town and missed the birth.

There are times when you're frustrated and left wondering why everything has to be so difficult - stress clouds things and you struggle with believing how it could possibly be 'part of God's plan'. Unemployed and struggling to find work, not seeing that you needed to stop, slow down and find the time you once had to rebuild relationships. Divorce seems easier than the challenges ahead to make a marriage work, possibly make it even better. Your child is sick while battling cancer and you struggle to see how your faith in God is an inspiration for others.

Being in the middle of some of life's stresses makes it difficult to see that God is ultimately in control. We want to hurry up and get through things, especially if they are too difficult, taking too long or we’re impatient to get to the next step. I recently read this quote:

"Stress makes you believe that everything has to happen right now. Faith reassures you that everything will happen in God's timing".

Those words hit home despite being difficult to read and at times, difficult to trust. We live in a world where it is easy to have instant gratification; patience is replaced with instant results. Impulsive credit card purchase for a winter getaway instead of pennies collected in a jar, the option of 5 day diet plans take place of months of sweat at the gym or the frustration waiting for someone to reply to a text replaces watching for the mailman to deliver a letter. These seem minimal to stress of piling bills, illness or putting food on the table, but sadly that is where focus is drawn and even these first world stresses can take us away from the 'big picture' and from what is important.

Life is full of stress, some big some small and it is easy to try and carry the weight of it on our shoulders - instead of giving it up to God, knowing He is in control. This New Year’s, I have been inspired to try and complete 50 Random Acts of Kindness. I may not be able to be in control of my own stresses, but instead will try to focus on giving those up to God and look at how I can help others. By looking for moments to help ease the stress in other's lives I take the focus off myself, resulting in bringing a smile to both our faces. It can be as simple as paying for the coffee for the individual behind me in the drive-thru, holding a door open for someone struggling with their bags or to offer watching a child so a parent can run an errand. It can take more planning like donating blood or gathering supplies for those in need in third world countries... big or small - you know they will make a difference even if you never get to see the results.

Sometimes you are blessed during these moments of Random Acts of Kindness, to hear stories surface how the timing was perfect, easing the stress in someone else's life, brightening their day - reminding them they are not alone.

Hearing these stories, reminds me that giving up my stress and having faith that God is in control - allows me to open up and give back to others. To be able to see and experience firsthand God's perfect timing.






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