If you are a planner like me, you tend to plan out the perfect route for your life to go. Does life ever turn out the way we plan? No. None of us know the future and what awaits us there. Yet it is so easy to get wrapped up in all the planning. Planning is a good thing don’t get me wrong. However, if we fail to hold onto those plans loosely we can fall prey to discontentment. When we are constantly seeking our own will and neglecting to ask God his, it is no surprise that a change of plans can wreck havoc on our emotions. We can begin wishing it would have turned out the way we planned. Or we can become caught up in trying to fix it so it gets back on track with our plans. We expound so much energy on making our plans work that we may miss a much more beautiful plan.
When we fail to seek out and strive for God’s will in our life we become like C.S. Lewis said “…an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea.” God’s plan for us is so much more than we could ever plan for ourselves. Sometime we go through struggles and we wonder, God what are you doing here?? We may never find out until we reach the other side. But rest assure your best interest is at hand when God is on your side. We can choose to let the situation make us better or bitter.
Sometimes we seek out God’s will but it is hard to discern. We can then become restless and annoyed that he is not answering us. We can begin to worry that we are not in his will. I have concluded when this happens he is right there with us letting us choose our path. In Joshua 1:9 it says: “Have I not commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.” If you are diligently seeking God’s will in your life, and praying for him to direct you, he will be there for you. We may make a wrong decision. But he will help us through it. On the other hand, sometimes God lay’s out very clear for us what his will is.
I have also found it helpful to surrender our desires to him. Now this is not easy. I am ashamed to admit sometimes it comes down to the line before I fully surrender. It is easy to say to God in a situation that it is completely his and whatever happens I am ok with. But to truly mean it from the bottom of my heart is different. When I finally reach the breaking point and am down right tired of stewing about it, I am finally ready to give up and give it all to him. That is when beautiful things happen. When true peace comes. Knowing that it really is okay and God is in control. I know in my head I need to fully surrender the moment something comes up, but my heart is not always ready for it right away! Oh if there was only a simple formula to make our hearts right from the get go!
The bottom line is that God’s will for our life can be crystal clear at times, and almost impossible to discern other times. But if we are daily asking for his guidance, direction, and help we can rest assured he will be with us. God’s will for our life is so much better than ours. If we cling to our own will we won’t find the true contentment we strive for. It can be hard and scary to give up our dreams and desires to God, but when we do we can find a peace knowing that whatever happens will be good.
Scripture to ponder:
Luke 22:42- “..Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.”
Isaiah 55:8-9- “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Homework for the Heart:
Look back on your life and see how God’s hand has been in it. Have things gone always according to your plans? If not reflect on how these changes and see the good that has come from them. If it was a struggle that is hard to find positives in, think on how that situation has impacted who you are today. You may not want to go through something again, but realize it had a part in forming who you are today.