Have you ever planned an outdoor event just to have it postponed or canceled due to inclement weather?  Or perhaps you have had to change a lunch date with a friend because of an illness in the family or an unexpected work-related appointment.  No matter how meticulous we may be in orchestrating our monthly calendar; our plans often take a backseat to something that was completely unplanned.  But even when our plans change, we can always rest assured that God will work all things together for good (see Romans 8:28), according to His perfect will.

I am reminded of something one of my friends always says when she is making plans.  She prefaces the intended plan with the words, “Lord willing and the Creek don’t rise.”  In the 1800’s, people often used these words instead of responding with an affirmative yes, in accordance with James 4:15.  This scripture states, “Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’”  The second part of the phrase, “the Creek don’t rise,” also originated in the 1800’s.  Back then, there were 19 tribes of Native Americans who formed the Creek Confederacy.  If they were to have another uprising, a person’s plans may have been interrupted.  In the same way, things happen today that are beyond our control.

In fact, our plans sometimes change drastically, without warning.  Recently, a colleague was in a car accident when they hit a deer on the way to work one morning.  One friend of mine is battling breast cancer and another is facing brain cancer surgery.  There are so many similar stories out there of people enduring seemingly insurmountable struggles.  Life is an extraordinarily fragile and precious gift.  There is no guarantee of tomorrow.  But we can take comfort in the truth that lies within the words of the beloved song that says, “Many things about tomorrow, I don't seem to understand.  But I know who holds tomorrow.  And I know who holds my hand.”

From personal experience, I can tell you that life does not always go as we plan.  My mom, three siblings, three grandparents, and numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends are in Heaven.  While I am so very happy for them to be rejoicing around God’s throne, I miss them greatly here on earth.  Nevertheless, I trust God’s will completely, as I know His ways are perfect.  When I pray, I have faith that He will work all things out according to His will, not my own.  Sometimes, His answer may be yes, sometimes no, and other times, He may ask me to wait patiently.  If you’re like me, it’s often hard to wait patiently.  We live in a society that wants everything now.  From fast food to high-speed internet, this world has conditioned us to get what we want without delay.  Yet many times the one thing we need is to slow down and watch God’s hand at work in our lives, for His timing is impeccable.

The Bible says the Lord considers a day to be like a thousand years and a thousand years like a day (2 Peter 3:8).  Therefore, we need to try to realize that everything we go through on earth is somewhat temporary.  2 Corinthians 4:17 says it best: “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”  Although we encounter some very dark days on this journey called life, we can rest assured that something better awaits us.  Whether we are in a state of tears or triumph, we can take comfort in the fact that God has a perfect plan for us.

God loves us more than we could imagine.  God loved us so much that He gave His only Son, Jesus Christ, so our sins could be washed away.  Jesus rose again on the third day and is sitting at the right hand of the Father, interceding on our behalf (Romans 8:34).  One glorious day, a trumpet will sound and everyone who has a personal relationship with Jesus Christ will be called up to meet our Lord in the air.  Everyone who believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life in Heaven (John 3:16).  The things on this earth will pass away, but Heaven will be our forever home.

So the next time someone asks you to make plans for lunch or dinner, or a myriad of other engagements, be sure to include God’s will on your calendar.  While you may not comprehend the way things work out, you can find sweet rest in the knowledge that God has everything under control.  He knows where we should be, when we should be there, and who we should be with at all times of the day.  His calendar is not measured in days or months, but in lifetimes throughout eternity.  Put your trust in Him today.  For the best laid plans are not made of times and dates, but of the eternal hope we have through Jesus Christ!

In Christ’s Love,