The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men
I like to be organised and I like to make plans. I like to plan the things I need to do and when they need to be done. I like order and having a system. I do not like it when that order is disrupted! However, our plans don't always go according to, well, plan!
Recently, my computer crashed which also meant my plans for that day crashed too. I was so frustrated. I now couldn't spend the time I had put aside to work on my laptop. It made me feel that my time was being wasted because I wasn't able to do as I had wanted to. Jason suggested I take it in to him at work to take a look at. It was kind of him, but this was not how I had envisioned spending my day. It was all taking up what I saw as my precious time. What made it worse was we weren't able to fix the problem that day.
At around the same time our dishwasher broke, a copper pipe in the kitchen came apart, which meant we needed to have the water turned off while we waited for it to be fixed, and the pump (situated in the airing cupboard) for our shower began leaking. It all meant that time, which I had planned for other things, was now being used up on these issues instead.
As annoying as these disruptions to my plans were, God used the situation to remind me of some things:
1. Technology is great all the time it works. However, we can't always rely on it. Sometimes we rely on things and people too much. This is sure to cause us problems because no person and no thing is 100% reliable. God, on the other hand is totally reliable. I can lean on him at all times. I can rely on him to meet my needs. He is always there for me and he will never let me down. "Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock." Isaiah 26:4 (ESV)
2. There is nothing wrong with making plans, but rather than making my plans based on my understanding and what I want, I need to take the time at the start of a new day to be with God. To talk with him about what plans he may have for me for that day. "Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand." Proverbs 19:21 (ESV). I try to make it my habit at the beginning of the day to ask for his help to use my day and time wisely. To concentrate on the things he wants me to do that day rather than the things I think are important or urgent. To be willing to make changes to my plans if he sees fit to bring something unexpected in to my day. This should help me to have a better attitude during the day and feel less frustrated about my plans.
3. As much as I like to be in control over what I do, the truth is that it's not possible to have control over everything. My laptop crashing, the dishwasher breaking down, the leak in the airing cupboard were all outside of my control. Any control I have over a person or thing is fragile at best. The only one who has complete control over all things is God because he is sovereign. "The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to him. 2 For he laid the earth’s foundation on the seas and built it on the ocean depths." Psalm 24:1-2 (NLT). He wants me to surrender my need to control over to him. To submit to his will. When I remember how much God loves me and that he only wants the best for me, it becomes easier to surrender my will to his. "I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." Galatians 2:20 (ESV)
So, when my day doesn't go according to plan I can remember these three things: First, God is the one I can have complete confidence in. I can totally depend on him for all my needs. Secondly, God knows best how I can spend my day, therefore, to make the most of my day it would be wise to spend time early on in his presence, to seek his purpose for the day. Thirdly, to surrender my desire to control over to God and rest in him and his sovereignty.
To Think About:
What is your natural reaction when your life doesn't go according to plan?
Have you relied on things or people too much and felt let down by them?
Are you willing to surrender control of your life over to God and watch what he will do?