When God’s Plans Are Different Than Yours – Sully Pierce
Posted by sam
Throughout your life, you are constantly going to be making plans, whether it’s for what you’re going to eat for breakfast, what you’re going to do this weekend, or what you are going to do with the rest of your life! Most of these decisions are trivial and easy to make, what do I want to eat right now? I’ll just open the fridge and grab the first thing I see that looks good, easy choice made. But some decisions become much harder, which of my friends should I be spending my time with? What should I do once I graduate high school? What should I dedicate my life to?
In the midst of all these decisions and plans we make in our lives, it can be so easy to forget about the presence of a God who sees it all, who knows you so well He already knows what you are going to decide long before you choose, and who loves you so much He wants the best for you. I don’t know about you, but I find myself time and time again making decisions about my life or trying to follow through on plans I’ve made without consulting God at all or inviting Him in on the plan. Often it’s not until those plans fall apart that I find myself falling back down before God and realizing my mistakes and my feeble attempts to make something of this life through my own strength and wit. Sometimes I find a plan that I thought God had led me to fall apart, and I find myself frustrated with God, wondering why He would sweep the rug out from under me like that.
The amazing thing is that God has been there the whole time, His love for me has not changed, and His wisdom has not failed. He has been weaving these plans I have made on my own into His grander plan the whole time, setting things in motion that I never considered, some I will come to see the fruit of later in life, and some I may never get to see, but all will work for His will and the good of His people.
Reflecting on the mysteries of God’s plans always has me thinking about the life of Paul. Back when Paul was still called Saul he had what he thought was a great plan, he was going to rid Jerusalem and the surrounding areas of this new group who claimed their leader had returned from the dead. God had other plans though! Not only did He speak directly to Saul and turn him into a disciple of Jesus (Acts 9), He used the persecution that Saul had put on the early Christians to further his work. Later in Acts 11 we find out that some of the people who ran away from Jerusalem because of Saul ended up starting a church in Antioch, and that church ends up sending missionaries to all parts of the ancient world. One of those missionaries was Paul himself!
For the rest of Paul’s life, we see him continue to have faith in God’s plans even as he sometimes ends up in terrible situations that he never would have envisioned for himself. I find myself asking, how can I have that kind of faith myself? There are a lot of practical ways to work toward that. Read stories from the Bible about disciples like Paul trusting God throughout their lives. Talk to and learn from faithful disciples in your community who have gone before you. Pray constantly for God to increase your faith. But the number one thing that I would say you must do is to fix your eyes on Jesus.
Different translations of Hebrews 12:2 use different terms to describe Jesus’ relationship to our faith. He is the pioneer, the founder, the champion, the author, and the perfecter of our faith. Only by looking to him can we run with endurance the race that is set before us’ (Hebrews 12:1). So I beg of you today, whatever state your plans are in right now, take some time to fix your eyes on Jesus today, and ask him for faith like Paul, to trust that the Lord will work things out better than you could ever imagine, and be with you in every decision, whether big or small.
In Christ’s Love,