One strategy you can implement in your daily life to become a more effective Christian is to embrace God’s plan for your life, but knowing how is challenging for many of us. Consider these three questions:
- Do you believe that God has a plan for your life?
- Do you believe that God’s plan for your life is better than anything you could possibly imagine?
- If you had an idea of God’s plan for your life, would you trust it and take actions towards it?
Whether your idea is to create a new ministry, a new podcast, new blog, or book, or even just to plug in and serve in your local church, it’s crucial that you answer Yes! to each of those.
Why a resounding Yes! response Is important may need some clarification. Let’s break each question individually and discuss its importance.
In the first question we pondered: Do you believe that God has a plan for your life?
When you can’t answer Yes! to this, that means you are not 100% sure that God has a truly deliberate, intentional plan for your life, which makes it really difficult to embrace the person God created you to become.
One of my favorite psalms in the Bible is Psalm 139:15-16.
“My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”
The psalmist is making the point that God is intentional when he creates every single one of us. There are no oops accidents in God’s creation of us. If you believe you weren’t supposed to be born then you may have just been thinking you have to take your life and cobble some kind of thing together so that you can be useful.
But that’s not how God operates.
Every single one of us fits a role, usually many roles, playing a part in God’s plan. It’s God’s glorious story that is being told through all of humankind, throughout all of history.
Each of us is a cog in an amazing God-operated machine.
You are not an accident.
You are not expendable.
Don’t just believe this intellectually. Instead, embrace this fact.
Choose to embrace your value to God, that you have many offerings to make and that God wants to use you to do something incredibly special.
So, do you now really believe that God has a plan for your life? I hope that you can say Yes!
The second question was: Do you believe that God’s plan is better than anything you could possibly imagine?
It’s really important for you to be able to answer Yes! to this question as well as the first, because when you don’t believe that God’s plan is better than your plan, you aren’t able to trust God to lead you where he wants to take you.
One of the most poignant examples of this sort of obstacle we put in God’s way is the story of Jonah when God comes to Jonah and says, You need to go to Nineveh to preach to that city, and Jonah thinks he has a better idea than that. He jumps on a boat and heads in the opposite direction!
Because Jonah was not convinced that God’s plan was the best, or because Jonah just didn’t want to follow God’s plan, he wasn’t all-trusting in his relationship with God.
You have to be all-in, even when it doesn’t make sense, even when you aren’t sure how it’s going to work out, and even if it doesn’t seem like the best thing do at the moment.
It’s really important to be all-in, fully trusting God, and really knowing that God does have your best interests at heart. Anything that God is calling you to do – even if it is more difficult, even if it requires more sacrifice, even if it’s unpleasant at times in the long run – is going to be so much better than anything that we could cook up or create or imagine.
it’s really important to embrace this so that as a part of your discipleship, you embrace the Jesus is Lord mentality.
God’s plan for you is better and exceeds anything you could possibly imagine.
When you are excited about this fact and can get on board with it, you can’t help but set yourself up for success as you start to think about and figure some things out.
The third question was: If you had an idea of God’s plan for your life, would you trust it and take actions towards it?
This question is probably the scariest of the three questions.
If you knew without a shadow of a doubt what God wanted you to focus on over the next year, would you do it, even if it scared you? What if it was overwhelming and intimidating? What if it forced you to stretch outside of your comfort zone? And what if it seemed too risky?
Sometimes we cannot deny all the doubts, insecurities, and fears that keep us from really leaning into and pressing forward with what we know God is calling us to do.
The issues that make us hesitate often extend far beyond using our gifts and talents for God – these can hit every aspect of our lives. For instance, if you choose not to share your faith with that coworker because you’re not certain how he or she will respond, that’s actually denying yourself of something possibly great for you, the coworker and God’s use of you. Or, think about this: Instead of going on a vacation on a cruise ship, what if you went to a third world country to serve the poor for a week?
All of these decisions that we make in life, big and small, we have to consider and decide. We wonder if we’re really sure that we know what God wants us to do and are we going to trust him enough to actually do it?
Are we going to trust God enough to say Yes! to that?
Think about this: When Joshua was about to enter the promised land after taking over leadership of the Israelite nation from Moses, God gave him an amazing promise.
Because God knew what was in store for Joshua, he gave Joshua encouragement. In Joshua 1:9, God says,
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid. Do not be discouraged for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
What’s really cool about this, also, is how Jesus echoes the same at the end of the book of Matthew in Matthew 28:19-20.
“Go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the father, the son of the Holy Spirit, […] and I will be with you always.”
Always. Jesus is with us. Always.
Even when it’s scary, even when we’re not really sure how things are going to work out or what’s going to happen when we say Yes! to God, there’s one thing you can take to the bank.
One thing that will always be true: God will be with you.
Whatever God asks you to do, God will be with you.
God has a plan for you and he wants to use you.
When you can answer Yes! to these three questions and trust in God completely, you’ll be in for a wild and exciting ride, with God at the helm.