God’s timing is perfect. That’s what they’ll tell you. We’re all just waiting on God’s timing and, darling, you’d better believe it’s better than ours.
But I don’t always believe it.
Sometimes I think God shows up at really inopportune times. I mean, is it really too much to expect Him to arrive on the scene before everything comes crashing down around me? But I find Him among the wreckage over and over again.
“You’re late,” I say. “The tower has crumbled. The train has wrecked. The bridge has burned.” I feel like I’m right there with Mary and Martha, shaking my head and swiping at tears. “You’re four days late, Jesus. Lazarus is dead.”
“A God is never late, Rebekah Snyder,” He replies. “He arrives precisely when He means to.” (Because sometimes God sounds a lot like Gandalf.) Then He smiles and He laughs, and sometimes I laugh with Him, but most times I just stand there because I don’t know exactly what that means.
Because I’m still covered in ash and soot and wondering, always wondering, Where were You? Where were You when the foundations started shaking and the train skipped the track and the flames were shooting sparks into the sky? Because that’s when I needed You to intervene; not now that the crisis is over.
I know that He sees the accusation in my eyes. I know He knows exactly what I’m thinking, but it doesn’t seem to bother Him one bit.
He crouches down in the rubble that is my life and pulls out a rock—a single blackened stone. “Here,” He says, pressing it into my palm. “Keep this. Carry it with you. You’ll need it later on.”
Gee, thanks God. My life has fallen to ruins around me and You’ve left me with a pocket full of rocks. I’m touched.
But I forget…
I forget the weight and power such simple things can carry.
I forget that not everything is lost to this tragedy.
I forget that giants are felled with stones.
And I realize that when God shows up in the wreckage, He isn’t collecting souvenirs; He’s gathering weapons to supply His army.
As a friend of mine told me when this siege on my soul first began, “You are a soldier in all of this. A lovely, lovely foot soldier.”
Sometimes I don’t want to be. Sometimes I just want to crawl back to a place I can call “home.” Sometimes I want to take this pocket full of rocks and launch them into the next river I stumble upon.
But I don’t. And I won’t. Because, like it or not, I am a soldier in all of this. And I like to believe God handed these pieces of wreckage to me for a reason, so I won’t let them go.
I carry them here in my pocket, my fingers running over the jagged edges until I finally know what God was trying to say when He gathered them up in the first place.
“You are an overcomer, my daughter. A victor. A champion. A conqueror. Don’t you ever forget that you’re stronger than your circumstances, steadier than your trials. You are a soldier in all of this. A lovely, lovely foot soldier. Don’t give up. I have need of you yet…”