Well, here we are. Do you think it’s just another day? It’s not. Each day is part of God’s grand plan, and you are part of that plan!
“‘For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity, to give you a future and a hope.’” —Jeremiah 29:11 (NASB)
This passage in Jeremiah is a great study in contrast. Chapter after chapter, Jeremiah speaks God’s truth about the destruction, mayhem, conquest, and exile that God’s people faced at that time. Then, this sentence in Chapter 29 brings uplifting news—that even though things are dire, God has great plans for His people. In fact, no matter how good, bad, difficult, or confusing the circumstances are, God always has great plans for His people. That means that God has great plans for us, too. To learn more about this, let’s start at the very beginning.
In the beginning, God created everything, and he completed His incredible creative work by making special creatures—human beings—patterned after Himself (Genesis 1:27). Think of the most beautiful and awe-inspiring creations of God—snow-capped mountains, the sun that provides light and heat from millions of miles away, the ocean waves pounding on the shoreline. As amazing as all these things are, none of them contain God’s essence, nature, or image. Only we do! We are beautifully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). Any feelings we have of inadequacy or inability are unfounded. We have been designed to be a vital part of God’s plans. In fact, God has known, since before time began, that we would come along at this very moment, and that we would be equipped to meet His plans head-on (Ephesians 2:10).
That’s how it all begins. Now, let’s fast-forward to the end. It gets even better!
In the end, God’s plans will culminate in a New Heaven and a New Earth in which there will be no death, mourning, crying, or pain (Revelation 21:1-4). Worship, praise, and joy everlasting will replace the struggles and destruction of the present world. The only requirements are that you be made in God’s image (which you are!) and that you have chosen eternal life. (Click back to “For God So Loves You” if you’re still not sure about this part.)
So, if we are especially designed for God’s plans, and those plans are glorious beyond description, how do we do our part? The Bible has some advice on the subject:
Seek an ever-closer personal relationship with God. Jeremiah 29:12 gives us this formula:
“Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me and I will listen. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with your whole heart.” (NASB)
Call on God + pray to God + seek God + search for God with your whole heart = Find God!
All the above activities draw you closer to God. And the better you know Him, the better you will know your part!
Follow God’s lead. Remember who made the plans! Don’t try to substitute plans that differ from God’s. Follow Him where He leads you (Mark 8:34).
Don’t give up if the going gets tough. Press on, and strain toward what is ahead (Philippians 3:12-14).
Find others close to God. It can be very helpful to find others who can help you and advise you (Proverbs 15:22).
Enter each day with great expectations and joyous anticipation! A positive, expectant attitude is always a great advantage. That’s the truth.
“I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord, “and I can’t wait to tell you about them. They are plans for your welfare and not for calamity, to give you a future, to give you a hope. I have given youthe very parts of Me you will need to see these plans through to their glorious conclusion—eternity spent together with Me, free from all pain and suffering and filled with all joy. Let’s get started today!”
That’s the YouTruth. God has plans for you.
© 2009, 2011 Dan Buckhout