by Sharon Wilharm @SharonWilharm
By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace. Hebrews 11:31 NKJV
I remember the first time I stood behind a podium to speak to an audience. I was a ninth grader, chosen to introduce the speakers at the morning session of the Florida Baptist Acteens Cometogether. How excited I’d been to sit in the green room, making small talk with Barbara Joiner, the “Cookie Crumble Lady”, and Julie and Johnny, a ventriloquist act. Then the time finally came for me to leave the green room, walk the three feet to the wooden podium, and wait while the speakers settled themselves in the stiff chairs on either side of the stage.
Something happened in those steps between the back of the stage to the podium. As I looked out at the crowd of teen girls and their leaders, a peace came over me. I smiled as a younger girl on the front row snapped my picture. In that moment, I knew that this was my happy place, that the stage was where I was destined to be, and that someday I would be the one sitting in the stiff chair on the side of the stage while someone else introduced me.
The only problem: I was fourteen-years-old, and no one has any interest in hearing what a fourteen-year-old has to say. So I waited. And waited. Praying that God would give me wisdom that I might share as a speaker. But even though He’d open up opportunities to speak here and there, mostly He just said, “Wait. It’s not time yet.”
For forty years I waited, and just about the time He began opening the doors to the opportunities I’d dreamed of, Covid-19 hit. Fortunately, those forty years were not spent waiting in vain. God has taken me on so many side journeys better than I ever imagined, each one preparing me for the next role. I know He’s got me right where I’m supposed to be, so I can wait it out and see what it is He has for me to be doing right here where He’s placed me.
Rahab also had to wait for God. We have no idea how long Rahab had searched for the truth. How frustrated she must have been as she listened to reports about the Israelites and their God and wondered if she would ever be allowed to join them.
But when the Hebrew spies showed up at her door, she was ready. As soon as she had them safely hidden on her roof, she pleaded her case, and when the walls of Jericho came tumbling down, Rahab and her family were whisked to safety outside the camp of Israel. She went on to marry a godly man, raise a godly son, and ultimately be a part of the lineage of Christ.
Rahab was stuck in a place she didn’t want to be, but it turned out to be exactly where she needed to be. God sent His messengers straight to her, and because of where she was situated on the city walls, she was able to deliver them back to safety. They needed her as much as she needed them.
It’s easy to get frustrated waiting for God’s timing. We may feel like He’s forgotten us. We may be tempted to jump ahead and take matters in our own hands. But if we put our trust in Him, He will deliver us. And when He does, it will be so much better than anything we imagined.
About the author: Christian speaker Sharon Wilharm is a women’s ministry leader, popular media guest, and award-winning female filmmaker whose feature films have impacted audiences around the globe. An accomplished storyteller, Sharon draws the audience in with humor, engages them with stories, then ties everything together to bring to light spiritual truths. Her heart’s desire is to encourage women in their walk with the Lord, showing them how to find God’s will for their life through prayer and scripture.
Sharon’s movie Summer of ’67 is a Vietnam War love story told from the perspective of
the women left behind. Sharon’s dad was aboard the USS Forrestal when it caught fire on July 29, 1967. She grew up listening to her parents talking about the Vietnam War, and wanted to pass along to younger generations the experiences and sacrifices made by the men and women of the 1960’s while reminding all audiences that God is bigger than whatever comes our way.
Join the conversation: Are you on hold, waiting for God?