When Plans Are Shattered
But Jehoshaphat also said to the king of Israel, “First seek the counsel of the Lord.” 1 Kings 22:5
Planning is essential for us to reach a desired end goal. Without plans we can become easily distracted, fail to prioritize and end up worse off than when we started. It was Benjamin Franklin who was quoted as saying, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” There is nothing wrong with planning and we should carefully think through how a plan will achieve the desired, end result. But what happens when we become so bent on our own plan that we neglect to leave room for God to work His plan through us? Proverbs 19:21 reminds us that, “You can make many plans, but the LORD’s purpose will prevail.”
Are you willing to let the Lord’s purposes prevail? Planning is essential but when we see our way as intrinsic to success and leave no room for the Spirit to move, we will find ourselves in a frustrated state of confusion or worse, questioning the wisdom and goodness of God. We trade the Divine for the “mine,” insisting that our plan should rule the day. When making plans it is important to remember the following three principles:
- Consult the Lord: Just because God has not yet revealed His plan does not mean He does not have one. “The counsel of the LORD stands forever, the plans of His heart from generation to generation.” Psalm 33:11. Seek His counsel.
- Plan, but also wait for the Lord’s answer: It is easy to get caught up in negative, destructive thinking and in a moment of impatience jump the gun. When it appears that your plans are in ruins and you are confused with what is happening, wait. The Lord is faithful to answer but oftentimes He asks us to simply abide in Him. “The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the LORD.” Proverbs 16:1
- Let the Lord direct your steps: When you don’t know what your next steps should be or where the path lies, place your confidence in the One who makes paths straight and rocky roads smooth. “The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9
Trust the sovereign Lord who knows your heart, your desires and your temperament. Be willing to step aside and allow Him to remove the things that are blocking the path; and sometimes that thing is you.
Heavenly Father, I do grow weary and impatient when my plans seem to be frustrated and shattered. Help me to trust Your purposes and to step aside from my will to embrace Yours. Help me to abide confidently in You, Your Word and Your plans for my life, in Jesus’ Name, Amen