I first really learned the concept of the word "deferred" when I started working for a publishing company. We sold annual subscriptions for various prices and accounting for the revenue was unique. We'd collect $150 for a year's subscription in advance and then defer that income over the next twelve months. Although we already had all the money, we didn't experience the revenue until the publications were shipped.
I was reminded of a Scripture recently that I love and have claimed a lot in the past, but it had faded into the back room of my memory. Proverbs 13:12 says, "Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when dreams come true there is life and joy." This is a verse, as a single person, I cherish. It allows a dreamer like me, someone who never gives up hope, realize that although hope may be deferred, when the dream comes true, it is very joyful. Someone made the comment in a Bible study I was in last week that she never saves seats in church. I told her I don't either, my husband may come and sit there. The facilitator of our study, and my associate pastor, overheard my comment and said, "Always a woman of faith." A hope deferred.
I often wonder if that dream will be fulfilled, yet I realize that I'm a dream fulfilled from a hope deferred from many years ago. My parents had a hope for a child for nearly 20 years before their dream was fulfilled in my birth. I'm not only an unexplainable life, but a real life example of how a hope deferred can make the heart sick, but that dreams are fulfilled by God's grace.