God’s timing is something I don’t always quite understand.
“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.” Isaiah 55:8 NLT
There’s no doubt in my mind, however, God knows what He’s doing. And, from previous experiences I believe His timing is always perfect, even if it doesn’t seem as so.
But, every now and then, I’ve been known to need a reminder.
I received one not that along ago–the week of our daughter’s wedding.
Zach, our college-attending son, has had some struggles in the past year with a sporadic stomach issue. It would cause him to experience intense pain, followed by hours of being sick to his stomach. A dull ache would follow for the next day or two, and eventually it would go away.
He woke Tuesday morning, the week of the wedding, to this familiar pain and vomiting.
As we texted throughout the day, his symptoms were similar to the four previous instances. But, when he mentioned he’d like to come home, I had a feeling something was different. I dropped everything that afternoon and made my way north 1-1/2 hours to pick him up and bring him home.
When our children are sick something happens to us mommas.
We turn into super mom-nurses, don’t we? No matter how old they are, when our children aren’t feeling well, we mothers can’t help but want to take care of them. It’s ingrained in us. We’re wired that way. Bringing Zach home and caring for him would make him feel better. Right?
Wrong. The stomach pain didn’t go away. Instead, it centered itself on his lower right side. His comments of the location of his pain didn’t cause me concern until I climbed in bed that night. Googling where is your appendix?, the list of symptoms on my screen matched Zach’s.
Could he be having an appendicitis?
Our 9:00 appointment the following morning led to an exam and a CAT scan and to the news I feared. Yes, Zach’s appendix would need to be removed. That day. On Wednesday. Three days before our daughter’s wedding.
God, why? What are you doing? It’s the busiest week of our lives and we have no time for this. There’s work to finish, wedding details to complete, and way too many things yet to cross off my list! Couldn’t this have waited until another time?
Thoughts like above raced through our minds. Zach didn’t like the thought of surgery, but not once did he complain. Never once did he question. He was ready to feel better… and soon. We prayed and trusted God. Zach was added to our church’s and friends’ prayer lists, and their prayers were felt immediately.
My feelings of panic were quickly replaced with peace.
Because I encouraged Zach to eat two pieces of toast before we left home that morning, surgery was delayed until 4 p.m. (Good job, Mom!) so his stomach would be empty. In the meantime, Bill made his way to the hospital and our bride-to-be, Alissa, left work to be with her brother.
Texts, calls, and visits from friends and family poured in. Many asking us what they could do to help us. Their presence, words, and love enveloped us all.
In those moments, however, Zach recognized something I didn’t.
He shared with me later how God showed him a gift in the midst of this challenge. We normally would have been scurrying and hurrying, finishing last-minute details and emptying our to-do lists on this Wednesday before the wedding.
But, God had our family of four there together in that tiny hospital room. The last time all four of us would be together before our daughter’s big day. He had us right where He wanted us, and right where we needed to be. Together. Nothing was more important in those moments.
And, looking back, I believe that Wednesday together was key. That day (and God’s presence) was the determining factor of the peace we felt leading up to and on Alissa’s wedding day. All because God reminded us of what’s most important and because of His impeccable timing.
Yes, God’s timing is perfect.
Thankfully, Zach’s surgery went well. Within a few hours we were on our way home. As we traveled, we thanked God for a successful surgery and we recounted His blessings, one after another. Everything from God’s timing to the surgery completed by our favorite surgeon to the fact his appendix didn’t burst.
All were gifts from God. All were gifts we cherished.
Zach rested the next couple of days, and on Saturday–the wedding day–you would have never known he had surgery three days prior. He looked great and he said he felt pretty well, too.
There’s nothing like the relationship he and his sister share. We thank God for allowing Zach to be present in his sister’s biggest day of her life.
Sometimes God’s timing doesn’t seem perfect to us, but in reality, it couldn’t be more perfect. May this story encourage you as you trust God in your circumstances and in His timing.
P.S. If you haven’t read the post about Alissa and Morgan’s wedding and their perfect wedding day, you can find it here.
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