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How to Handle Divine Delays

June 16, 2023

How to Handle Divine Delays

How to Handle Divine Delays

By Brooke Holt

“And behold, a woman who had suffered from a discharge of blood for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, for she said to herself, ‘If I only touch the fringe of his garment, I will be made well.’ Jesus turned and seeing her he said, ‘Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.’ And instantly the woman was made well.” Matthew 9:20-22

Have you ever noticed the Lord does not often work on your schedule? I excel at making plans for God and then telling him how and when to activate those plans. Often, I find that Jesus’ plans differ greatly from mine, and his timing never seems to coincide with my rush. I try to view my times of waiting as divine delays. In the passage today, Jairus is experiencing one of those painful divine delays. While desperate to get Jesus to his home to revive his daughter, a most unwanted interruption happens on their journey.

Jairus was not the only person desperate for Jesus. For twelve long years, this poor woman had suffered from a discharge of blood. You can read in the other Gospel accounts where she had done everything to get healed, and her situation had only gotten worse. Not only did this woman suffer tremendous physical pain from her bleeding, but she had to remain cut off from society as Levitical law deemed one who bled “unclean.” (See Leviticus 15:25-27). She had no comfort in her condition and no hope as she had spent all her money on doctors who could not heal her.

This desperate woman heard about Jesus, and she was willing to do whatever it took to just touch the fringe of his garment. For 4,384 days this woman had been bleeding. She was weak, and she was prohibited to push through the crowds for risk of contaminating them. Yet, she mustered up all her strength and courage, and she pursued Jesus with all that she had left. Why? Because she believed the reports she heard about him. She believed he could heal her, and she believed he was worth the effort and risk.

This woman’s courageous attempt to get to Jesus worked. She did touch him. Then, Jesus sought her out and affirmed her faith. She was worth Jesus’ time. Jesus’ delay led to a divine healing and encounter.

Maybe Jesus would have you reconsider your times of waiting. This woman waited 4,384 days to be healed, but what a glorious day it was when she got to Jesus! Jairus would continue to walk the journey to his home with his desperate desire to see Jesus heal again. Would it be worth the wait? As it was for the woman, it will be for Jairus.

What about you? Do you recognize that Jesus knows things you don’t? Do you believe that even when he does not cooperate with your plan and timing that he is working and that he is good?


Are you experiencing a divine delay? If so, take some time to remember God’s faithfulness, to recount his promises, and to trust in his timing. He is faithful! We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Recommended Resource:

Pilgrim's Path

Follow the ancient way of the Psalms and find the life God has for you. A model for vibrant worship, the Psalms provide practical wisdom to traverse the circuitous path of life with trust and hope. Pilgrim’s Path: A Study of the Psalms traces our spiritual walk with God—from discovery and delight, through doubt and disappointment, into joyful confidence. Whether used for individual or group study, Pilgrim’s Path is for everyone who seeks to know and love God more and find life in him.


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