Is My Plan God’s Plan?
By Pastor Donald Parker
Most people would never admit to leaving God in the back room of their life. They want God to rule over religious issues, moral issues and conflicts around the world. However, when it comes to things like finances, relationships, where to live, who to marry, what house to buy, careers, business decisions and any other decision; they want to be God of their own lives.
James addresses the problem of us playing God with our own life in James chapter. He writes, (13) “Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” (14) Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. (15) Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” (16) As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil. (17) If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.”
Now, it’s good to make plans, it’s good to have goals, but your plans and your goals can disappoint you if you leave God out of them. If you will learn to put God’s will and His desires before your plan; I can promise you His plan will never disappoint you!
There are four reasons in particular why you must include God in your plans; first because of the complexity of life. James addresses the businesspeople that were planning on moving and establishing new lives in a new city. Again, planning is not evil. In fact, it’s wise for businesspeople to plan ahead. What James addresses is the problem that God isn’t included in their plans. With all the complexity of life, when you seek God’s will in every aspect of your life; life begins to have simplicity and unity that leads to balance and assurance.
Next, you must include God in your plans because of the uncertainty of life. Proverbs 27:1 says, “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.” James refers to our lives as a “mist” the point being; life is short. No one is guaranteed another day. So, don’t deceive yourself into thinking that you have lots of time left to live for Christ, or lots of time to enjoy family and friends, or lots of time to do what you know you should. Psalms 90:12 says, “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
You also need to include God in your plans so that you don’t become full of yourself. When you exclude God from your plans, you’re playing God in your life. You quickly become boastful and arrogant – full of yourself, and that my friend is evil, it’s wrong, it’s sin. Proverbs 14:12 says, “There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death.” You might think you have the perfect plan; you might say you’ve got it all figured out, but if you haven’t included God’s will in your plan, you’ll end up running it off in a ditch! It is foolish to exclude God’s will from your plans.
Next, you include God in your plans to avoid being disobedience to God. James says, “If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.” We tend to limit sin as an act of doing wrong (stealing – murder), but James tells us sin is also not doing what is right. Example: It’s a sin to lie; it’s also a sin to know the truth and not tell the truth. It’s a sin to gossip about someone; it’s also a sin to avoid a person that you know needs your friendship.
So, how do you make sure your plan is God’s plan? You submit your plan to God’s perfect will and here’s why; Proverbs 19:21 says, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”
When you pray, “Lord, if this is your will for my life, then Lord this is my request” you are seeking God’s will and submitting your plans to His perfect will. God answers this kind of prayer. He may answer yes, He may answer no, He may answer not now, wait.
If you will seek God’s will first and wait patiently for His reply, I can promise you that your plans will be better than you could have ever plan yourself. Proverbs 16:3 says “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.” Prayer and Scripture is where you find guidance for your next step. You should never expect God’s approval for plans you never consulted with Him about. God must be included in all your plans!