It never ceases to amaze me how many believers never give much thought to the plan and purpose God has for their lives. Far too many simply seem to be careening from wall to wall along the way to the Celestial City.
BUT THIS IS NOT FOR YOU!
“I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
Here we see a wonderful promise from God about His plans for our lives. If God has plans for our lives—and His Word clearly reveals that He does—I think it is absolutely critical that we prayerfully consider what those plans might be and get in line with them. Remember, if you are not living according to the plan and purpose God has for your life, you will always be living according to the plan and purpose of someone else. And, make no mistake, the plan and purpose someone else has for you, just might not be the plan and purpose God has for you . . . especially if you are the one making the plans!
This was one of the most important life lessons I had to learn . . . the hard way! I always wanted to follow my plans and my purposes for my life. It wasn’t until I realized (thanks to the help of my beloved wife, Kim, and a few good mentors) that it was not my life, but the life God had given to me to live for Him that I began to follow God’s plan for my life. And that, as the poet said, has made all the difference!
Notice two things the prophet Jeremiah is saying:
#1. God has a plan for your life. Now, that only makes sense. The Creator has a plan for all that He has created . . . and that includes you!
#2. God’s plans are good. What a word of encouragement we find in this promise from God! But we must understand what the phrase “plans . . . not to harm you” truly means. It does not mean we will not endure hardship or difficulties and then one day die. What it does mean is, when we do suffer, there is a glorious conclusion to the hardship: eternity with Jesus. To be sure, pain is part of God’s plan. But the pain He sends our way is always for our gain.
So . . . whose plans have you been following lately? Have you been working toward the accomplishment of your agenda . . . or God’s? The only way to find what everyone is looking for—that is, meaning and purpose in life—is to follow the plan and purpose God has for your life. And the only way to discern the plan and purpose God has for your life is by spending adequate amounts of time with God. The more time you spend with God, the more sensitive you will be to His leading. And the more sensitive you are to God’s leading, the more likely you are to be led into the plans God has for your life . . . “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!