Have you ever pondered the real meaning of Philippians 4:19, “My God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus”? If so, then you may also have encountered some frustration.
“What about this need I have had for years?” you wonder. “Doesn’t God care about that aching hole in my heart? Why doesn’t He just fill it by meeting my needs automatically?” The truth is, God wants us to trust Him and not look only for the blessing. In other words, keep our focus on the right thing, which is a personal relationship with the Savior. Circumstances have little to do with lasting joy. Peace, joy, and contentment come from knowing God and having a personal relationship with Him. The only way to be fully happy is to have a heart that is set on Jesus Christ. Then when difficulty comes, we won’t feel lost, confused, or disillusioned.
Many people attempt to meet their own needs apart from God. But this never works. It only leads to frustration and deep disappointment. There will be times when we wonder if He hears our prayers. He always does. And He also is the only One who can answer correctly and satisfy the desires of our hearts. So why do we struggle? Usually, it is because we think we know better than God. We fail to realize we cannot meet our own needs or compel Him to comply with our personal desires, schedule, or concept of how we think something should be done.
The first step to having our needs met is to trust Him completely with the entirety of our lives. He knows what is best for us, and His purpose in allowing any delay is for our good. Waiting prepares us for a greater blessing. It strengthens our faith and reliance on Him and consequently rids us of a desire to be self-sufficient.
The second step is to obey Him and allow Him to work fully in our lives. Many times, He stretches our faith by allowing us to have a need. He knows how we will respond, but He wants us to learn how to say yes to His design—even when we do not have all the information and facts.
The third step is to trust and wait for Him. In a very real sense, your unmet need is a form of trial and temptation. It’s a trial because its lack of fulfillment can feel truly painful, and it’s a temptation because it urges you to turn away from God to meet your own needs. But James says, “Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him” (1:12).
So what are you to do when the delay goes on, the pressure to give up increases, and you feel weary of beating yourself up with false guilt? It may sound like a platitude, but keep your eyes on the Lord and follow Him—no matter what. James tells us that the testing of our faith leads to perseverance, which works to make us “perfect and complete, lacking in nothing” (1:4).