Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- August 14, 2010
“May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.” Psalm 20:4
We can work hard to plan—and sincerely produce a best-laid plan—but make the mistake of asking God to bless the plan after the fact. This presumes on God. He is not thrilled with the presumption of His blessing. Presumption communicates distrust and disrespect. He may choose to bless the unprayed plan, but why take the chance? And why take the credit? He will share His glory with no one.
So, a prayerless plan will leave you in a perilous position. This is an easy step to forget or to assume. You are so excited about the possibilities before you that you rush ahead without checking in with the originator of the plan. He already has the blueprints sketched out. He is a generous giver, waiting to validate your plan and even disclose part of His plan you have yet to discover. It is a beautiful process of discovery and learning.
In the nighttime, as your head ponders on your pillow, He will speak to you. Through other people and circumstances, He will speak to you. Your wife or financial constraints will be accurate indicators. And obviously, His Word is a great check-and-balance for your planning process. Prayerful planning keeps you married to Christ and not to the plan. Your plans will change, but He will not. What reassurance and peace our unchanging God gives.
So, involve Him in the beginning and throughout the process, not just with the final draft. Like a good earthly father your heavenly Father will be engaging and helpful. He will affirm you and challenge your thinking. He will give you a perspective that may be out of the box and a little scary. God’s plans are not always safe and secure from our vantage point. Sometimes His plans are risky and riling.
If you are not planning prayerfully, you may miss His unconventional thinking. His way of doing something may be the very opposite of what you were originally thinking. Do not be afraid of conflicting opinions. God will use this to sharpen your thinking. It is much better to have a scrubbed over plan than one that is soiled with wrong assumptions and fat with lazy thinking. Engage others to pray with you through the planning process.
Especially involve those who have been where you are trying to go. Their prayers are informed and productive. They will pray from an understanding and empathetic heart. These praying saints will not throw toward heaven some half-hearted, wimpy softball. Rather, their passionate prayer will storm the throne of grace on your behalf with boldness and conviction. Look for those whose only agenda is God’s best for your life and invite them in the process of prayerful planning.
Prayerful planning may slow down the process or accelerate it. Either way, it will require trust in the master planner. His overall plan is what is best. Trust Him with the results. Prayerful planning produces powerful performance!
Taken from the Dose 12 reading in Boyd Bailey’s Infusion. This 90-day devotional book is a compilation of the reader’s favorites from Wisdom Hunters daily devotional. Andy Stanley says, “I have walked with Boyd for over 20 years and I am definitely wiser for it. You are going to love this book!”
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