Susan Murray 

Today’s Scripture: “You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.” James 5:8, NIV 

Theme: When your dreams seem stalled, wait in patience for the Lord. 


Traveling is not my dream. It's just not in my nature.  Although I like the thought of seeing places, the process of getting to the airport, through security, and being at that gate on time causes me anxiety. Delays can happen and the threat of missing my flight affects me and I start trying to control my husband with all my worry (which doesn’t go over very well.) Our biggest conflicts have occurred in airports. I become irritated at the slightest things that may delay us and threaten my sense of control.  

Praying prior to travel helps to settle me. I confess my tendency to fret and choose to stand firm in God’s love. Even if delays affecting my travels occur, it’s not something that changes my relationship with Jesus. I don’t have to obey my worries or speak them aloud when delays occur. Yet, when I confess and pray through them (which doesn’t change my delay), I am changed.  It also helps me love my husband (who does love to travel!). 


I’ve heard the phrase, “Patience is a virtue” and “Be careful not to pray for patience,” because that means God will bring something difficult into my life. Patience is part of the fruit of the Holy Spirit working our lives (Galatians 5:22-23). We know these things and we really want to be patient, but for just so long. Enough is enough, right?  

My daughter is going back to college to become a respiratory therapist. She is starting a new semester where she will be participating in clinical training for eight hours, then come home to her on-line job for four hours, with an hour commute each way.  It’s going to be a brutal schedule. I told her this morning that knowing it’s only for a short time frame and knowing exactly when it will end can help her to make it through to the end. 

The patience that James 5:8 is referring to lasts our lifetime. We don’t know how long that will be. James 5:10-11 give us an example of patience by describing Job’s faithful endurance after suffering the loss of all his children, his wealth, and his health. Through it all, he lamented bitterly because he didn’t know why these things were happening to him. Yet in the end, God did not condemn him for complaining but commended him for his endurance. Job didn’t turn his back on God, but complained to God’s face, reasoned with God, and finally, Job heard from God. When he did, he humbled himself and said, “I repent in dust and ashes” (acts of mourning in that culture) (Job 42:1-6 NIV). God restored his health, wealth, and family. 


Sometimes, dreams are not delayed but completely shattered. Then what?  Larry Crabb, Christian author and psychologist, wrote, “Shattered dreams are never random. They are always a piece in a larger puzzle, a chapter in a larger story. The Holy Spirit uses the pain of shattered dreams to help us discover our desire for God, to help us begin dreaming the highest dream.” That highest dream that we may be unaware of is a relationship with Jesus.  

Make it personal: What are your dreams today? What are you waiting for to prove life matters. Where have your dreams been shattered? God is pursuing you because He loves you. Remember Jesus promises to return and make all things right; cling to that hope to give you the endurance of Job and remain faithful.  

Prayer: Father, You know everything about me and You never turn away. Everything that comes into my life-- both good and bad--is part of Your plan and for my benefit. You know my dreams, those that have come true and those that are shattered. Help me to remember how Jesus, for the joy set before Him, endured the cross (Hebrews 12:2) and that I am His joy. Help me also endure for the joy set before me, which is Jesus’ return. Your promise to come back is true and faithful. Forgive me when I doubt You, and grumble during the delay. Help me make You my greatest dream. Amen 

Read: Psalm 40:1-3, 42:5, 145:19; Romans 8:23-25, 32, 37-39 

Weekly Memory Verse: “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” Philippians 2:3, ESV