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But this hurts....

I say this because I know the plans that I have for you.” This message is from the Lord. “I have good plans for you. I don’t plan to hurt you. I plan to give you hope and a good future. (Jeremiah 29:11 ERV)
We all start on new ventures with a little sense of apprehension, not sure of which way the events before us will unfold. We are open to something new, but also a little bit fearful that "new" will be harder than we might really want to experience. We don't always know the full depth of the chasms we will have to traverse, nor do we appreciate the full height of the hills we might come to find ourselves gazing outward upon. Yet, we begin.
Do we have to know the fullness of God's plans to trust him with our lives? I don't even think we are able to think things out to the fullest in our own finite thinking, so no, I don't think we need to know all God will do with what we are about to encounter. I do believe we need to trust he will not hurt us. I need to trust he will take whatever small hope I have and multiply it into the dynamic faith that will take me through what he has planned.
Having said that, let me deal with this feeling some might have of God not caring, or being a little "harsh" with them because they have gone through hard places in their lives. Hard places aren't always God's doing. Sometimes hard places are there because of our own doing, but most of the time they are there because evil exists in this world. We cannot live in a bubble - evil affects us all - some to a much higher degree than others.
If it is impossible to live without evil around us, what is possible? We can live without evil IN us. God's presence isn't going to take us out of evil, but it will help us to live in such a way evil doesn't gain an inroad into our lives. Some may ask how innocent people can be affected by evil - even those who know and trust God. God doesn't say we won't be in the path of evil intent, he tells us to trust him to give us the integrity to live upright in the midst of all manner of evil.
God's plans give us great reason to hope - for his plans are always for good in our lives. We might not understand how God can bring good out of tragedy, but as long as he remains our constant companion, he does. Just sayin!

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