Do you remember when you were little and had all these plans and dreams for your life?
You just knew that your life would turn out exactly like you wanted.
You grow up and pray that God will have His way with your life, and He will be done.
So what do you do when God’s plan for your life doesn’t match yours?
It has been my experience that if I sincerely pray for God’s plan to be done in my life, all of my plans blow up in my face!
I had all kinds of plans. I just knew how my life was going to go. But let me assure you, God had completely different plans!
At this time, I began to ask, “Why?” “Did I make a mistake?” “Did I not hear you right?” “Is this really Your will for my life?”
God’s plan is different than mine, and I’m supposed to be thankful?
1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”
This is a challenging verse to wrap my head around sometimes.
I have sat in my room or wherever, talking to God and praying about certain situations, and this verse will come to my mind.
Sometimes it is tough to understand how our current situation can be God’s will for our lives in the world.
How can being unhappy in your marriage after trying for years to do the right thing and be a faithful, loving wife be in God’s will?
When you struggle every week and month while trying your best to be a good steward, is that really God’s will?
Why would God want me to grow up with only one parent?
I am reminded of Paul in these times of questioning. Have you ever read the book of Philippians? I love it!
Philippians is considered the happiest book of the Bible. Do you know the circumstances Paul was in when he wrote the book of Philippians?
He was in prison! Yep, prison.
Trust me when I say this, I have been round and round with God on this whole ‘will’ thing.
I have prayed, questioned, praised, trusted, asked even more questions, and trusted some more. It’s crazy!
God has a plan for my life, and I have questions!
Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever asked God for something, and He gave you the opposite? How did you handle that?
What do you do when trying your best to live according to God’s word and trust Him with your life and the outcome?
Do you get angry with God? Have you ever quit trusting that God has a plan? Is it easy to become depressed?
Several people in the Bible experienced this. I have read these stories repeatedly, but not until the last few years have their accounts come alive to me.
Abraham is an excellent example of this. He was promised children as great as the stars, yet he and his wife waited 25 years for that promise to be fulfilled.
Don’t you just know he had times when he questioned God? I’m sure he and his wife had a few discussions about this.
The story that has really hit home for me lately is that of Job.
Again, this is a story I’ve read who knows how many times, but it wasn’t until I talked to a friend that I decided to get my Bible and reread it.
I absolutely can not even begin to imagine what he was thinking!
He is living his life, taking care of his family, just minding his own business and doing his Job, and then BAM!!
His life COMPLETELY falls apart! He loses everything all at once. Every single area of his life was touched by this.
His family, his work, his friends, his faith. Literally, every single area of his life was touched.
I have to admit after reading Job’s story, I begin to feel very selfish and childish. Hand to the face when I think about how I act sometimes.
In my heart, I know that He only wants what is best for me.
He said that He knew me before He formed me in the womb.
How could He not want what is best for me?!
He promises to work everything out for my good.
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28 (NLT)
Now as much as I hate to admit it, I have made some mistakes in my life, and I can honestly say, looking back, that God has been amazingly gracious to me!
So as the psalmist, David, said, “I will praise the Lord for His mercy endures forever.”
God has a plan, and I’m beginning to understand
My friend told me something that really hit home.
She said, “I’ve had to learn to let things go. I may never understand why things have turned out the way they have, and that’s ok. God is in control, and He has a reason for allowing it.”
Honestly, you would think I would know this at this stage of my life.
I’m no spring chicken, and I have had several life experiences that should have taught me by now that I may never have all the answers.
I may never know why God caused or allowed certain things in my life.
And that is ok. It’s ok not to have all the answers as long as I know the One who does.
It’s ok not to have all the answers as long as I know the One who does.Tweet
It seems to me that the key is to learn to rest.
Rest in God’s goodness. Rest in God’s love for me. Rest in His mercy.
It can be hard to just rest. Resting is literally doing nothing. How can I do nothing when my life is crazy or falling apart?
How can I rest when I need answers? We need to be doing something. We need to fix things, right?
But that really isn’t our Job. Our Job is to not be afraid. Our Job is to trust God’s heart and to rest in Him.
Are you able to do that? I’m learning. It is not always easy.
Sometimes it is hard to jump off the merry-go-round of trying to fix things, letting God be in control, getting anxious and impatient, then trying to fix things again.
God has a plan, so where do I go from here.
As I am personally going through some tough things right now, God is teaching me. He is teaching me to let go.
He is teaching me to let Him be God and trust all He says He is.
I’d love to say I’m this powerful Christian, and like Paul, I’m just sitting in my prison (of doubt, worry, anxiety, you can fill in the blank) praising God!
But I’m not always doing that if I’m honest.
If I’m being honest with you, sometimes I struggle. I struggle with trusting God will work this out for my good.
I STRUGGLE WITH TRUST when I don’t see any possible way this can work out for my good. I don’t doubt God can do anything. Sometimes I just struggle doubting if He will.
I think about my life and the mistakes I’ve made, and I know I don’t deserve His goodness and grace. But, on the other hand, I know sometimes I deserve the mess I’m in.
Then God reminds me of His great love for me. Finally, he leads me to His promises and throne of grace and mercy.
I am overwhelmed by His love!
Waves of emotion hit me like waves in the ocean crashing onto the shore as I read about His love and mercy and grace and forgiveness.
I am brought to my knees in a heap thanking Him over and over and filled with His peace that passes all understanding.
His assurance that He’s got this. It’s under control. I don’t have to have all the answers. That’s not my Job; God’s Job is to have the answers.
My Job is to trust in the One who holds me in His hand and hides me under the shadow of His wings, and I know that I am ok.
God has a plan, so I have assurance.
If you are going through something in your life that has you questioning God and His goodness and love.
If you don’t have all the answers and you are tired of being on the “merry go round of crazy,” I call it, then come to the cross of Jesus.
Stop whatever you are doing and tell Him you can’t do this anymore and don’t want to.
You need Him to take over and help you stop questioning everything and just trust Him.
As I read these verses and study the stories that go with them, I cannot help but thank God for showing us all He is.