Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Making Plans

"You can make many plans, but the Lord's purpose will prevail."  Proverbs 19:21

Ever notice how quickly we make plans without asking God first?  No wonder I take on too many things and become frazzled...most of the time I am not taking time to seek the Lord before I make a decision. 

Many times, my "people-pleasing" side comes out in me when someone asks me to do something.  I don't want to let anyone down, so immediately my response is "yes, I'll do it!"  Then, I come home feeling overwhelmed and tired. Then, who gets my leftovers and my not-so-pleasant attitude?  My family and God.  It seems I only come to God when a big decision needs to be made.  But, should we limit God by only coming to Him with the big things in life? 

Right now I am learning to say no to things that I should not take on in this season of my life.  More than that, though, I am learning to ask God first.  Instead of coming to God after I've over-committed, I am learning to come to God first.  It all starts with the little things.  How can we practice coming to God first before we make our plans?

  • Start with the little, everyday things.  Just the other day, I was shopping and wanted to buy a shirt.  Usually, I would throw it in my cart and buy it.  But, I took time to prayerfully consider if I really did need to buy the shirt.  After I did this, I felt like the shirt was over-priced for our budget and I shouldn't buy it.  I know it sounds a little over-the-top, but I think we have to re-train our minds to seek God first.  So, I put the shirt back.  A few weeks later I came back to the same store and went to look for the shirt again.  It was on sale for 50% off.  This time, I had a peace about buying the shirt.  And, instead of feeling guilty for a purchase that was too expensive, I felt like I had made a wise decision.  All of this happened because I took time to ask God first.   
  • Look at the Bible.  Today I read from Joshua 9.  Joshua was a man who sought after the Lord, but in this chapter, he chose to make a treaty with a group of people without first seeking the Lord: "So the Israelites examined their food, but they did not consult the Lord" (Joshua 9:14). Because he did not seek the Lord, he was deceived into making a treaty that never should have been made.  All throughout Scripture, we see examples of people who fall because they did not seek the Lord first. 
  • Follow-through with what God is prompting your heart to do.  It is not always easy to say no to something you want to do, especially if it means you have to let someone else down.  But, above all else we need to seek the Lord.  At the same time, we need to be ready to step out in faith when God is calling us to do something we might not want to do as well.  He might be asking you to go overseas on a mission trip or to share your testimony with someone else.  We must learn to seek Him first and then obediently follow His promptings.  
"Seek first the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need."
Matthew 6:33

“If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones..."
Luke 16:10

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