Things can turn in a day. I had this revelation recently and it puts hope in my heart. It’s one of the first thoughts I have in the morning, and I wonder, ‘what if it’s today?’ It’s funny how things can be one way for so long… and I mean, sooooo loooooong…. And then in the space of a day – sometimes a moment of that day, things can become totally different. I’ve seen it play out, I’ve heard about it, I’ve read about it and I’ve lived it. One. Day. Everything can turn around in a day. Sometimes it happens both gradually, then suddenly, as Ernest Hemmingway once wrote. It’s like little pieces start falling slowly into place and then one day you look and ‘all of a sudden’, there it is. Change has happened, a switch got flicked, breakthrough occurred, an opportunity sprung up. In one day, it all turns around.
I recently read about Moses’ birth in Exodus 2. He had been illegally kept alive by his mother and hidden in their household until he was 3 months old. Unable to hide him any longer, she creates a waterproof basket for him and floats him down the Nile in the hope his life will be able to go on. She leaves him there and walks away a broken and devastated mother. Her daughter stays and watches over him and witnesses the daughter of Pharaoh not only discover but also admire the baby. She courageously addresses Pharaoh’s daughter suggesting she can find a Hebrew woman to nurse the baby and on approval fetches her own mother to do just that. All this in one day! This mother goes from floating her beloved son down the Nile, to not only receiving him back, but with guarantee of his longevity and protection and on top of that was paid to nurse him! In one day. A mother full of loss, to a mother full of promise, hope and deliverance for her family. One day!
In one day, all of Israel were released from slavery in Egypt. In one day, they not only walked out with permission, but they were also given gold, silver and clothing as they left. They had been in slavery for 430 years. 430 years! Generations! They had endured escalating harsh treatment. They had endured plagues where each plague they expected it to bring their release and yet it didn’t and the disappointment and discouragement compounded daily. Each plague and ‘miracle’ made their lives worse, not better. Morale was at an all-time low, conditions at their most horrendous. Then in one day, with what proved to be the last plague necessary, they walked out a free people. In one day, the breakthrough came. In one day, what seemed like a lost hope came to fruition. In one day, 430 years concluded.
In one day, Joseph who had been sold into slavery by his own brothers, falsely accused of rape by the wife of his slave owner and wrongfully imprisoned, went from his dreadful dungeon of imprisonment, to the second in command in Egypt. In one day! A life displaying constant disappointing turns despite a definite destiny that spoke of quite the opposite. It couldn’t have gotten worse and the wait, I’m sure, could not have felt longer! Yet… in one day, it all turned around.
In one day, the most ambitious and successful prosecutor of Christians was blinded and His life dramatically intersected and forever changed. A man who was so passionate about religion that he missed the God he intended to serve, preferring violent control to maintain his own sense of justice. In one day, the revelation hit, that he had had it all wrong this whole time. In one day his whole theology, training and upbringing flipped. In one day salvation came to one man who would then lead people across multiple nations to their own salvation.
In one day, God can suddenly act. In one day, a situation can totally flip. In one day, a piece to your puzzle will finally click into place effortlessly. That satisfying ease of how the right piece so naturally just fits in the grooves after trying to force other pieces there that seemed right and yet could not fit properly! In one day, it can all finally land. It can seem a ‘suddenly’ though the wait has been long and the longing deep. It seems the ‘suddenly’ rarely happens without the hope and the anticipation to both lead and make the way.
Suddenly rarely happens in a vacuum. Habakkuk said of the vision he received for the people of Israel, ‘For the vision awaits an appointed time; it testifies of the end, and will not lie. Though it lingers, wait for it, since it will surely come and not delay.’ We need to keep faith, that ‘though it lingers’ it will come and not delay. There is a definite waiting period before all of God’s ‘suddenly’. As Peter reminds us, ‘The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9).
It’s easy for us to get frustrated and believe God is slow. He is taking way too long. The waiting is excruciating and the longing unfulfilled. Even Proverbs tells us that, ‘hope deferred makes the heart sick.’ Waiting is hard yards. Yet… in one day it can all turn, and none of us know when that day will come! God is at work in the wait. There is preparing to be done, so that the ‘suddenly’ finds a heart ready to step into it and a character ready to uphold it. In this way God gets the glory and your life displays His goodness and His perfect timing.
So, here’s to you in your waiting! May this thought also encourage you as it has me. May your heart retain hope. May you allow the waiting to work in you to build endurance, strength and character. May that promise that you hold come, and not delay. His timing is perfect, His ways higher and He withholds no good thing from those whose walk is blameless. Though it linger – wait for it! It will surely come.
Today could be that day… Everything can turn in One. Day. Everything!