I am reading through the Bible. As I do this, I am amazed at the timing. I can read it in order, one book after another and no matter what, my reading relates directly to what’s happening. God speaks through His Word…I used to (and sometimes still do) manipulate and search the Word for the thing I felt was happening. If I was going through something that required me to wait on God, I would look for, “Be still and know that I am God.” and try to apply it to my situation. Today I started reading Ecclesiastes, which means I just finished Proverbs. In Proverbs, I came across a verse I that relates to this phenomenon.
It says this: “Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” (Prov. 19:21) I make plans. God has a purpose. I can plan and manipulate this and that to get it to fit into what I want and what I am doing, but in the end, God’s purpose will prevail. Like when I read the Bible, I can search for what I want; or I can read it and let the Spirit teach me what He wants. I believe that his purpose will prevail either way. In my heart, I have this plan and that plan and sometimes get anxious thinking, “What if I miss it?” That proverb gives me comfort, reassuring me that God’s purpose with indeed prevail.
Here in DTS, there are plans, plans, and more plans. We plan the outreach, the schedule for lectures, the after-travel in our “Around the World” airline tickets, and the “what’s next?” in our lives individually. It can be over-whelming to say the least. By tomorrow night, everyone in the school (including me) has to have a detailed itinerary worked out and turned in to our travel agent for what we are calling the “after-travel” section of our airline ticket. Basically, it’s cheaper to by a ticket around the whole world with a group of airline partners like Star Alliance than it would be to get individual tickets to each of 4 countries along with Israel for graduation in August. For example, my team leaves New Zealand 5/17 and travels several countries in Africa before ending the school in Jerusalem 8/1. We stay in Israel debriefing until 8/19, but then what? The ticket allows a total of 16 stops not exceeding 36,000 total miles. By the time we get to Israel, we will have used up 7 of the 16. That leaves 9 more stops inside of a 1 year period but always moving in that same direction (west) and finally ending again in Christchurch, New Zealand.
It’s incredibly exciting and a great privilege, but a lot to plan at the same time. It’s one thing for me to get all the money and dates straight for the Africa team pre 8/1; then another to get everything straight personally from 8/19 to 5/2011..then hand it in by tomorrow night. I basically have to do my best to plan a rough sketch and trust God for the rest…trust God that his purpose will prevail. I have seen it over and over in my life, but why do I still worry about the plans? He worked out my plans to sell my landscaping business in Nashville just before my Dad was diagnosed with cancer. I was able to spend time with him before he died, which I believe was God’s purpose. Further still, what is God’s purpose? Is it left or right? Or is it righteousness and love-prioritizing our relationships? When I am thinking about my plans-and many they are-am I attempting to love God and love others? If so, I can hardly make a mistake. He will guide my plans to fulfill his purpose. I truly believe that. I can not loose….