How Long, Lord?

FOR STANDERS, BY A STANDER (ANONYMOUS)
It was the morning after the first night of last year’s Covenant Keepers Virtual Conference. Sitting with the Lord that morning, I was pondering on the “restoration” of marriages. How we often ask, “When will my marriage be restored?” Or when we hear in a testimony, “On such and such a date, my marriage was restored.” I was asking the Lord about this when He said,
 
“Restoration can start now. Restoration starts with you!”
 
“Restoration can start even before any communication with your spouse, before your spouse returns, before any movement between you. It starts with you.”
 
Accompanying those words was a picture of a bridge being built (as is happening even now outside my window), but one that was incomplete and useless if the access roads and ramps were not in place. This idea was totally outside my concept of restoration. The Lord’s words reverberated in my mind, “It starts with you!
 
As I looked out my bedroom window, the Lord began to speak to me through the development taking place in the valley below. It is a significant project that will take two years (or so they said). From my window, I can only see a section of the development site. Driving or walking around the area, other parts of the site look to be making more progress. You can see it taking shape.
The site in front of me has been cleared after months of removing trees, shrubs, rocks, and mounds. They have excavated tons of soil, digging down to level out. However, over several weeks, it seemed to me like one mound of earth was simply being shifted to another spot, just moved around back and forth. I could not understand what was happening. They would dig deep down, and then within a week or so, it was filled in again! I would often think to myself, “Surely they know what they are doing!” 
 
On one occasion, I watched as the digger hit some hard rock. This ground things to a dead stop for a week until they brought in the big guns, a heavy-duty digger with a special attachment to chisel away and break up the rock. Boy, did it pound that rock! You could hear it! Watching on it was hard work and took time. Progress was much slower than excavating the earth. But they needed to carve into this hard layer to clear the way for the new road. This road is an essential component, linking the bridge to the ground. It forms the access ramp and is crucial for the bridge to function. Otherwise, it’s incomplete.
 
To my eyes, it all looked like a mess, even chaos. I would look on and think, “What are they doing?” I could see absolutely nothing that even resembled a road or bridge. There was not even a hint of anything like it. And it was taking ages, months, nearly a year!!! I had seen the virtual plans, and they looked amazing. Despite my pessimism and critical eye, grumbling about the inconvenience and disruption, I concluded, “They must know what they are doing!”
 
Can you see the parallels here for us?
 
God can be working in us now, in the interim, to remove those things in our life that need to go, to change us. To “fix” us -- our attitudes, expectations, habits, mindsets, insecurities, old wounds… a hard heart! Like the trees and boulders that needed to be removed from the site, so God wants to remove those things from our hearts and lives that could be a stumbling block to restoration, as well as to becoming the person He sees us to be.
 
Perhaps, we seem to be doing fine for a while. Even though there are challenges, things are shifting easily; God is working. But then suddenly “Bam!” We hit this hard spot like a solid rock face. Maybe we didn’t even know it was there, and God has to chisel hard away at that. But if we want wholeness and healing, we have to allow Him to do that. We partner with Him in this process by positioning ourselves.
 
Like a back seat driver, we may question what God is doing as we look on and see the mess before us, unable to see His blueprint, His vision of ourselves, our spouse, and the marriage He desires to build. At times it may be hard and painful to let God work in us, but we CAN trust Him. He’s not lost sight of what He’s doing, and He knows the outcome. He’s the architect and engineer, the builder and the constructor.

Let’s get our side ready and not wait for our spouse. Then we will be prepared to receive them. If we wait for our spouse to change or make a move home to start this restoration process, it may take longer or even create a stumbling block. Start the process now! That bridge will not only be a new highway for you and your spouse, but also for those affected and impacted by the brokenness of your relationship; those who will hear and see what God has done for and in you, as well as others that need God to work in their own life, marriage and family.
 
There’s a phrase “A bridge to nowhere” -- a bridge where one or both ends are broken or incomplete and does not lead anywhere. Interestingly these do exist. Bridges were planned and started, but for whatever reason, development stopped somewhere along the line, and now they are obsolete!
Let us not just pray for the bridge of reconciliation in our marriage; let us allow God to make us the highway leading and connecting to that bridge.

Restoration can start now. It starts with you!
 
Scriptures:
Isaiah 40:3-5
Isaiah 57:14
Isaiah 61:3-4
Isaiah 62:10
 
“Yahweh says, ‘Let the people return to me. Build! Build up the road, clear the way, and get it ready! Remove every obstacle from their path.’” - Isaiah 57:14 (TPT)
 
“Go through, go through the gates! Prepare the way for the people. Cast up, cast up the highway! Gather out the stones. Lift up a standard or ensign over and for the peoples.” - Isaiah 62:10 (AMP)
 

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