Skip to main content

Objective and Obstacle

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Eternal, “plans for peace, not evil, to give you a future and hope—never forget that. (Jeremiah 29:11 VOICE)
Woody Allen once quipped, "If you want to hear God laugh, tell him about your plans." It was meant as humor, but I honestly think I may have heard a slight chuckle on occasion from my heavenly Father when I have declared some lofty goal, plan, or purpose for something I am putting aside for later use.  He knows I have not always met my goals; my plans are sometimes a little too one-sided; and what I thought I'd use down the road somewhere just ends up going into the give-away pile at some point. There have been times when I have just sat back and listened to the plans God lays out, luxuriating in the moment when I let the desire to be in control all of the time just go; and then rising to really get behind those plans with all I have in me.  Those are the times I'd have to look back on and declare the plan really worked!
Plans of peace, not evil - to give us a future and hope. Plans of peace doesn't mean we won't face any hardship, just that it cannot affect our internal peace, hope, and confidence we have in a future in the presence of Jesus. A future is no good if the present is riddled with all manner of doubt and unrest of soul, spirit, and mind. We need our conscience to be at rest - not constantly niggling at us with some sense of guilt for what we have done, are thinking, or have plans to do.  We need our passion to be settled and consistent - not constantly moving us toward the easiest or fastest means to an end. These are the condition of a soul at rest - a soul that knows peace. Hope follows where peace resides. 
Most people realize that we "revise" our plans constantly - whether it be the route we take to get to work when traffic seems to ball us up in delays beyond our control, or the weather changes when we had planned an outdoor activity for the kiddos. We "alter" our plans because there are external influences that alter them for us! It isn't as though we made a "plan B" in our initially planning - we had to improvise with a "plan B" because life demanded it! One thing I have learned about God's plans - they don't need revision or "improvisation".  They are consistent, purposeful, and can be counted on - even when things get in the way of them being fulfilled for a while.
God's plans are referred to as "pre-ordained".  An architect lays out plans for the building he is commissioned to design. He takes into consideration all the factors as he lays out those plans such as the slope of the land, type of ground upon which it will be built, the purpose of the building, and even things like what type of weather it will have to endure. In making his plans, he has to consider the objective and the obstacles. I wonder what obstacles God foresaw when he looked at our lives, making the plans he has ordained for our lives?  If we keep in mind that he has already planned for those obstacles, we might find it a little easier to trust him with the plans - since he has already "figured out" how to deal with those obstacles!  Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Getting at the heart of it all

Have you ever seen someone so good with their skinning knife they can just peel away the hide of an animal without a rip or tear, no waste of any of the meat just below that skin? I have seen some fishermen able to fillet their catch with such skill not even one bone is found in the fillet. How do they learn this skill? I think it comes to them through practice and with the employment of the right 'tool' to do the job at hand. There is comfort in knowing that God means what he says and his Word will come to pass. His Word is like the scalpel in the skilled hands of a surgeon or the knife in the hands of the skilled hunter. As a nurse, I have seen the skillful use of the scalpel - dissecting away the finest of tissue to protect the healthy tissue and to expose the tissue that has become devitalized by disease or decay. I have also seen the damage done by a "blade" in the hands of one not trained or at all skilled in its use. The difference is beyond description.

God m…

Be a little salt

Ever wonder why Jesus left his disciples with the idea of being 'salt on this earth'? We don't fully appreciate salt these days because we aren't as accustomed to how it was used during the times Jesus spoke those words. We often have to put ourselves into the culture where the words are being recorded in order to fully comprehend the significance of their meaning. In the days of the disciples, salt was a basic "staple" of life. It was that which acted as "preservation" for everything. It also was the main seasoning of the dishes prepared - although there were other spices, salt was a 'staple'. Perhaps we would do well to look at some of the other functions of salt in order to see what Jesus may have meant when he referred to our lives a salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of the earth.

"Let me tell you why you are here. You're here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltin…

Hey, friend me!

When we really determine to walk the pathway of a disciple, it will cost us. The pathway is not always traveled by as many of those we call "friends" as we'd like to think. Yet, when we find someone to travel with us in this journey of faith, what a blessing it is! We need each other to understand and fulfill God's calling on our lives. We each compliment the other, challenging and uplifting, learning together what is contained deep in the Word of God.

Keep me safe, O God, I've run for dear life to you. I say to God, "Be my Lord!" Without you, nothing makes sense. And these God-chosen lives all around—what splendid friends they make! (Psalm 16:1-3)

David's words ring true in the hearts of many who engage in this walk of discipleship with Christ - without you, God, absolutely nothing makes sense at all. We can attempt to make sense out of tragedy, loss, or even a success all on our own. Without God, and those he places in our lives as fellow travelers…