Wednesday, August 13, 2014

What's The Plan?

I am a planner. If you read my last blog, then you also know I like structure, routine, and order in my home and in my personal life. As I often heard a wise woman say, "A place for everything and everything in it's place." Sometimes that works, but much of the time it doesn't, right?

Being a a structure oriented, type A personality, goes a long way in making me a planner. When we have a holiday or family get together coming up, I start making plans weeks in advance. Most of the time, planning in advance is a good thing and it sure helps things to run more smoothly, but.......sometimes even the best made plans can get unmade in a hurry.

This month we are celebrating our youngest grandson, Isaac's birthday. He will be a year old and we are so blessed and thankful for his life. Since April had a C-section with our grandson Alex, she scheduled a C-section with Isaac. And since the hospital was about 40 miles from their home, and she would have to stay for 3 days, David and I planned to stay in a motel with the 3 older children so they would be close to the hospital and it would make for much less driving back and forth.

As is true to my character, I had our bag packed several days before the planned event. Two days before the scheduled C-section, I receive a call from Kyle about 6 a.m. saying April was in labor, they were headed to the hospital and he needed me to get there as quickly as possible. Do you know what an unexpected 6 a.m. call like that does for a seasoned planner? First of all, I had "planned" to wash my hair that day and do all the things we women "do" when we know we are going to be gone a few days. I had "planned" to get everything in order here at home, and I was looking forward to spending a few days with the older children and being a help to Kyle and April and their family. But my plans didn't even enter the picture when I received that call. David had already left to get an early start at work, so I called him and told him what was going on, then I threw on some clothes, combed my needed to be washed hair, jumped in the car and headed to the hospital. I was excited, nervous, and deep in prayer as I turned on my flashers and as David says, "Probably at least drove the speed limit."

As I am driving down the parkway, I receive another call from Kyle. An ambulance had met them about half-way there and she would be arriving at the hospital ahead of them and I needed to be there. That sure wasn't in the plan, and I began to pray, in earnest, for God's mercy, His grace, and His blessing. God was faithful to our family that day and we have precious Isaac as evidence of His goodness.

Later that evening after things had calmed down a bit, I jokingly told a friend, "Well as usual, I made my plans, then God showed me His."

Do you ever make plans? It is scriptural to make plans; remember the ant in Proverbs 6? And what about the woman in Proverbs 31? She made all kinds of plans for herself and her family, and they were good plans, plans that God blessed. Making plans, setting goals for your family, your personal spiritual growth, financially and for your health are all good things and things that God will bless. The problem occurs when I focus on the plan and not the God Who reigns over the plan.

Proverbs 19:21; "There are many devices (plans) in a person's heart; nevertheless the counsel (decree) of the Lord, that will stand (prevail)."  I love that KJV word nevertheless; for me it's right up there with "wherefore and therefore". It says to me, "Penny, go ahead and plan your day, nevertheless, don't be caught off guard if I change things around a bit for your good and My glory." Only someone in authority can issue a decree and only God Jehovah has the authority to make a decree in my life.

So how do you respond when your best made plans are suddenly changed and you or someone you love must move in a different direction?

True of false:
1. I get angry.
2. I blame someone else.
3. I try to make my plan work anyway. (can be dangerous)
4. I cry and have a "poor me" party for one.
5. I adjust my plan to God's plan and keep on moving.
6. I learn from the experience and choose to ask God to help me make my plan the next time.
7. I look at God's plan and say, "Hey, this worked out much better than I had planned."

Well, needless to say, God's plan was much better than mine. April had a speedy recovery, no issues with surgery, she was back home in less time, and there was less stress on their family. And for me...I'm learning some planning adjustments. I find myself asking God more often, "Lord, what do You want me to do today?
How can I be a blessing to someone? I "plan" to do so-and-so today, but if You need me somewhere else, I'll change the plan."

I had such a good time that day with my grandchildren.  There was no plan, we just hung out, ate lots of junk food, made a movie of the day, and I inner-acted with people I may not have had the opportunity to be with had we stuck to "my plan."

Ladies, it is amazing what God will do when we let Him "run the show". Would there be less stress in our marriage, with our kids, in our health, at the workplace, even in our church family, if we didn't have to always be in control, and if we got up each morning and said, "This is the day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad." And Lord, what's Your plan for me today? And then move in the direction that the Holy Spirit sends us.

People watch how we respond to the un-planned, and they are influenced, one way or the other by how we react. It's amazing, yes, even life altering what un-explainable, supernatural things can take place when I take my hands off of my life and surrender control to the One Who has the authority to issue the decree and say


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