Scripture: Proverbs 16 (focus on 1-3, 9, 25, 33)
Observation: We must realize that we’re not ultimately in control – God is. When we humble ourselves and say “yes” to the plans that he has for us, we find what we desired all along: true success.
Application: I’m a planner. Anyone else? I love the thrill of making plans, meticulous detail by meticulous detail. Before I graduated from college, I had the perfect plan: work hard in school, intern (for free) a lot, get experience, graduate, say “yes” to a dream job in political communication, and go on to rule the world. (Just kidding. Unless world domination is an actual option?! Then count me in.)
My plan was perfect – except that it was only about me and only left room for one person: me.
“There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death.” (v. 25)
Right before I graduated, I was offered my dream job as a digital media director for a gubernatorial re-election campaign. It was everything I wanted! Everything I had worked for! But, I couldn’t say “yes.” By that time in life, something had shifted – and that “something” was my relationship with God… who was suddenly more important than my plans, even more important than my dream job.
“We can make our plans but the Lord determines our steps.” (v. 9)
In that moment, I started to learn: we have good plans for our lives… but God has infinitely better ones.
A few weeks later, I accepted a job that gave me space to serve at my church on the weekends and eventually afforded me the flexibility to begin working in ministry part-time, and then eventually full-time.
It simply took years to give up control and trust in God’s plans, rather than my own. It’s a lesson I’m still learning, even after experiencing his great faithfulness up to this point.
“We can make our own plans, but the Lord gives us the right answer.” (v. 1)
Where do you need to give up control today? Let go of the tight grip you have on your plans and be open to the ones God has for you? Where can you invite the Lord to direct your steps?
Remember: God’s plans are often scarier, more unpredictable, less comfortable – and also infinitely better than the ones we make ourselves.
Prayer: God, thank you for laying out plans for us that are infinitely better than any we could lay out for ourselves. I pray for the courage to follow your plan for my life, for the ability to listen, obey, and respond. Amen.