Being in Belize where the pace of life is slower, I wondered if God is more like a Belizean than a North American—at least where “time” is concerned. In regard to our prayer lives, I wonder if most of us have a hard time lining up with God's sense of time. We seem to pray most earnestly when in a state of crisis: and if God doesn’t respond with comparable immediacy, we panic. It’s so hard for us to slow down and wait.
So we pray like David: “In the day when I call, answer me speedily” (Psalm 102:2); or “I am in trouble: hear me speedily” (Psalm 69:17). The Hebrew word could be translated “right now, hurry up!” David was saying, “Lord, I put my trust in you—but please hurry." (Of course we know that David grew to trust God's timing as he matured in his walk with God.)
But God is in no hurry. Habakkuk was perplexed when God didn’t immediately answer his prayer of crisis: the Chaldean's were coming, and they were about to destroy Jerusalem. God’s answer: wait, the answer will come at just the right time. And so, Habakkuk relented, “I will wait for your answer” (2:1-4). The people who wait on the Lord, without wavering, demonstrate mature faith. They know there is an appointed time for everything. God is never late, never falls behind in His work, and is never in a hurry.