Last year I travelled to the UK for my ‘brother’s wedding. I call him a brother because he has been my friend for almost 18 years and truly is a brother. So you can imagine how excited I was as I made plans to attend from Lagos. Infact, I thought the dates had stuck somewhere in my head. I arrived the UK a few days before and the night before the wedding, I called and spoke to him and his then fiancée, excitedly saying to them that I would see them the next day which to me was their wedding day.
So it was that I got dressed, bid my friend with whom I stayed good bye, carefully checking and noting my bus numbers. I boarded the bus and then walked a few metres from the bus stop to the church. When I got there, it was quiet and there was no activity. Hmm, I thought there may be a back entrance so I rang the bell. Someone answered and the porter told me there was no wedding there that day. Hmm, no wedding? Then I asked myself what date it was, it was 15th. I realized that I must have mixed up the dates. I went back to my friend’s apartment and she laughed the daylight out of me as we checked the card. The wedding was for the next day, 16th but I had somewhat wired my mind to think that the wedding was on Thursday, rather than 16th [which was a Friday]. I was 24 hours early and she called it the ‘24 hours ahead miracle’. Okay o!
I have a lovely little cousin who was turning 3 about that time. I had been anticipating the birthday so much that I couldn’t wait until midnight to put up that lovely picture of her I had saved as my BB display picture. And that I did quite right with a lovely message to boot. A few seconds after I did, I got messages from her sister and her mum laughing their hearts out. Again I was 24 hours early. Her birthday was the next day! Chei, my ‘24 hours ahead miracle’ again. You have no idea how much my friends and family laughed and kept sending reminders to be sure I didn’t arrive the airport 24 hours before my flight back to Lagos. LOL
Now, of recent, I was expecting my aunt, who had been away, I was so excited that I somehow placed her arrival on Friday instead of Saturday and adjusted my plans accordingly. This time though, I realized my error before she was due to arrive. Again, my excitement almost got the best of me. I would have made dinner, gone through a lot of trouble before realizing that I was 24 hours ahead again.
Whilst I have become the butt of jokes by my friends on this account, it just led me to think a little deeper. Sincerely, all three times, I was excited and expectant and ended up acting out earlier, first because of my excitement and also because I failed to pay attention to detail. I learned the need to channel my excitement productively so it does not result in making sub optimal decisions. All I needed to do was pay attention to detail, (what was actually on the invite, what day, what date, when did my aunt actually say she was coming?). I also learned that there is an appointed time. My arriving at the church a day earlier or putting up the picture 24 hours earlier did not change the ordained time for those events. I should have waited patiently in spite of my excitement and at the appointed time, it would have come through.
Many times, like me, we are 24 hours ahead (this could speak of any length of time) and there are many reasons for it. But wait for the appointed time we must, there is a reason ‘He that believes does not make haste’. In my case, the action was reversible, but this is not always the case. There are several 24 hours ahead decisions that we may spend the rest of our lives trying to unravel. So, armed with communication and insight, wait we must so that at the right time, we will be ready for that which we have excitedly anticipated. Our excitement must not neutralize our ability to check, confirm, plan and wait. At the appointed time, it will come. (Hab 2:3).
I’m learning to be patient with God and with myself. I am often in a hurry when God isn’t, even for a good cause. But I have learned that God is never in a hurry, but He is always on time. Truth is that He is always purposeful and He will use your entire lifetime to prepare you for your role in eternity. So, no more ’24 hours ahead’ miracles in this sense. Yes, God can hasten His word to perform it but that’s HIM. not by my ‘excited hurry’.
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