“‘For 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 NIV
This is a famous verse. It is one we all know well, and one that we love because it gives us hope. It promises prosperity, safety, a future, and hope.
Yet, while these beautiful promises are made, we also need to remember the fact that sometimes we struggle to see God’s plans. Sometimes it’s hard to trust the process of God’s plan when we have to be patient or when we have to struggle through a hardship. We would rather fix the situation ourselves. We have an idea of the plans we would like to see happen. We know what we want and we know how to achieve it, so why can’t we just make it work out ourselves?
Let’s look at Sarai, later known as Sarah (the wife of Abraham). Everyone knows the part of the story where Sarai finally conceives a child in her 90’s! We all rejoice with her. However, did you catch the part where she tries to make the plan go according to how she thought it would go?
Sarai had a servant named Hagar. Sarah also had a hard time being patient. Since Sarai couldn’t see God’s timing, she believed that the family she would build would not come from her womb, but rather from Hagar’s womb. Sarai had her own plan of how to build her family. When she followed through with this plan, frustrations and resentment were sure to follow. She resented her servant, mistreated her, and sent her away shortly after Isaac (the son) was born.
There is also Jonah, who so clearly had his own plan. His plan involved turning and running the other direction. Even after being swallowed by the fish, he was still angry that the Lord had spared Nineveh. Jonah had his own ideas and plans for the people.
Perhaps you have your own plans. Maybe you have an idea about the family you desire to have. Perhaps you can’t conceive and have tried almost everything possible. Yet, you can’t shake the desire for a child. Maybe the Lord is leading you towards adoption.
Do you have ideas about how your job should be? Are there frustrations in the process? Dreaming of that promotion or even just more recognition? What if God is teaching you patience and humility because later there is a greater lesson in store?
Perhaps you are like me and have ideas about how to save all the orphans. You wish you could go feed, house, and provide for the orphan all on your own. But maybe God is inviting you to join with others who have a heart for the orphan. Just maybe, by joining with others, you can step closer to the Lord’s heart for community.
Trusting the process and plan when there seems to be no way is hard. We have our own ideas and solutions. But our fixes are only temporary and can bring more harm than good many times. But we serve a God who makes a way when there seems to be no way. We serve a God who allows us to step into His miracles. He parts the sea when we least expect it. We see barren wombs hold children, we see people saved and provided for when we thought of different outcomes.
Our God is good, all the time. All the time, our God is good. Let us render our hearts towards His grace that we may see the goodness, prosperities, futures, and hopes He has in store.
How have you seen God’s plan turn out to be superior to your own? Please share below: