August 17, 2011

Prayer is Planning

Written by Wisdom Hunters

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- August 17, 2011

“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21

Prayer taps into the purpose of God. The human heart can conceive and birth ideas, but what is the Lord’s best direction to follow? This is the beauty of being led by the Spirit and not driven by the flesh. It is in commune with Christ that Christians can be clear on next steps in their service for God. Indeed, prayer is preeminent in the planning process.

Prayer positions an individual and a group before God in utter dependence on Him for how to understand and carry out His plan. It’s when we rush ahead in bold, but blind determination that we miss out on engaging an eternal agenda in the process. Yes, the Lord can and does work through our immature maneuvers, but why not wait on Him in prayer and save ourselves time, money and emotional angst in the process?

“He gave him the plans of all that the Spirit had put in his mind for the courts of the temple of the LORD” (1 Chronicles 28:12a).

What are you facing that requires prayerful planning? Job relocation? Financial solvency? Marriage communication? A healthy family? Physical and emotional stamina? Spiritual growth? Ministry clarity? Relational growth? Church service? Time for rest? Be intentional to get ahead of the planning process with prayer and watch God’s peace reign.

How do you begin to enter into a prayerful planning process? Start by asking the Lord to purify your motives: praise Him and avoid the praise of people—seek alignment of your will with His will—all for His glory and not for your hidden agenda. A prayerful planning process is powerful, because it produces results way beyond your capacity. Prayerful planning invites the Lord to lift the agenda into His arena of blessing and favor.

So, slow down so you can speed up later—confident of a plan consecrated to Christ. Stay diligent in a process of prayer and discernment along the way: what’s good from what’s best. Ask Jesus to renew your mind, so your thinking is based on Almighty God’s abundance and not societies scarcity mentality. Prayer is planning that produces eternal outcomes.

“All this,” David said, “I have in writing as a result of the LORD’s hand on me, and he enabled me to understand all the details of the plan” (1 Chronicles 28:19).

What problem or opportunity do I face that requires a persistent, prayerful process of planning?

Related Readings: Psalm 40:5; Proverbs 16:1-9; Romans 1:13; 2 Corinthians 1:17

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