Sometimes, we’ve got our plan all worked out. We know exactly what we’re doing, where we’re doing it, why we’re doing it, and how it’s all going to shake out. This is a ‘safe’ place to be.
Other times, we’re twisting in the wind. A few key pieces didn’t come together and now the bottom is dropping out. We’ll figure out our next move when it happens to us. This is a ‘dangerous’ place to be.
Making Your Plan Thing a God Thing.
When we plan, we’re drawing a fuzzy line in the sand. On one side, we’re aiming to be good and faithful stewards. God has entrusted us with gifts, talents, and resources that we’d like to organize and cultivate in a systematic fashion.
“The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5 ESV
On the other side of the line, we’re establishing our own personal plan for salvation. Sadly,I’ve lived on this side of the line in the past. This is the side where I forget that Jesus is Lord. Jesus, not the roadmap I drew for my life on a contemplative Monday morning.
“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit’ – yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.” James 4:13,14 ESV
Plans are good, but plans are not God.
Living Out Your Plan
Think to the last time life was going ‘according to plan.’ You know, that time when you were just running down the list and checking off the boxes. Maybe this has been a regular occurrence in your life. Perhaps you’ve always been the ‘master of your own destiny.’
At our most base human level, we don’t have much use for God and His promises when we’re living life out strictly according to plan. Sadly, different seasons of my life have played out like this. They were ruled by shameful pride and my attempts to rule my world.
Made Perfect in the Chaos
Perhaps your life hasn’t always been as structured and predictable. I would submit that you’ve been blessed. The times in my life where I’ve experienced the deepest intimacy with God have always been marked by struggle. His power really is made perfect in our weakness.
It is in times of struggle that I cry out to Him most. In those times, I must completely release my futile attempts at control and submit to the One who is truly sovereign. Those are the moments when God reminds me that He is God; not me.
Here’s the big idea:
When everything is going according to plan, acknowledge Him. Pray through those plans. Give them up to Him. Seek the Spirit in your life and order your decisions in His will. Accept your circumstances as the result of His will, not yours.
When everything is falling apart, acknowledge Him. Romans 8:28 tells us that God works all things together for the good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. He is sovereign and His plan is always at work, even if your plan is not.
If we acknowledge God in all we do, we save ourselves from the effects of pride, arrogance, haughtiness, despair, hopelessness, folly, and so much more. Trust Him in everything and how does he respond? He makes your paths straight.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5,6 NIV
Don’t worry. He’s got it all covered.