Plan or Propose?

Why you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. James 4:14

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I entered the hospital room and was amazed at how life had changed in an instant. The healthy person I had seen earlier in the week was lying in the hospital bed clinging to life as he suffered the effects of a massive heart attack. Gone were the plans for a trip to Florida. Gone was the celebration of Christmas with the grandkids. It reminded me of how fragile life can be and how all our plans are but proposals before an Almighty God. We prayed and we asked the Lord to help this person and this family. Life had changed, but the love of God had not.

It is always good to have goals and plans in life. One drifts in the wind without them. Yet, plans should always include the Lord. We can ask, “What will I be doing next year or in five years?” However, we need to hold onto those plans loosely because the Lord or life can step in and rearrange our plans. I think of the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12 who made plans without the Lord only to lose everything in a single night. Life can change in an instant, yet if we put God’s desires at the center of our planning, we have a direction that will not fail us. He will help us through the difficulties of life. We hold onto Him because He will never leave us.

I bring find it helpful to bring my plans to the Lord in prayer. He helps me to weed out the selfishness of the rich fool and to be comfortable in this ever-changing world. I propose what I would like for the future, but I always ask the Lord to plan that future for me. My vision of the future is imperfect and cloudy. His vision of my future is crystal clear and filled with opportunities that I can’t begin to see yet. His future for me will always be better than my vision of that future. Life can change, but He will bring good things out of the bad and better things out of the good. I will propose what I want for the future, but I want His plan and not my own. His plan for me will not be taken away by the struggles of life. My plan is to place my life in His hands so that no matter what happens, I will be living in His plan for me.