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. (James 4:13-17)
There’s nothing wrong with making plans. Even God has plans. But our plans often reveal the state of our hearts. Are you planning apart from God or because of God? People who do not know God make bold plans without realizing that they do not control their time, much as they would think they do. The truth is that time is not in our hands. Each day is a gift from God. Well, each hour and each second is a gift from God. None of us can assume a single second! If God allows us to live, then we must use it to glorify Him. But this is not possible unless we first surrender our lives to God. Our real problem is not so much that we don’t think about God; we just don’t think of Him enough. Our plans are simply signs of our arrogance, i.e. we think we are in control of our lives. But once you submit your life to God (which is the best thing you can do to make your life really secure in Him), and allow Him to reveal His plans for you (which are far better than yours), then you can make the necessary plans that can conform to His will. If you want to know more of His plans for you, start studying His word, the Bible. To begin this journey, click here.
To believe in Jesus Christ is to accept His purpose for your life, which is your transformation, so that He can use you for His mission in the world (Eph 2:10). His purpose is not for you to just simply enjoy Christian events. His desire is not just for you to enjoy fellowships and other gatherings. His purpose is to transform your character, purpose and behavior through the power of the Holy Spirit (Col 1:28). If you will cooperate with His power and grace at work in your life (Phil 2:12-13), you will be transformed from the inside out. You will bear much fruit (John 15:8). He will then use you mightily, and your life will become an offering of praise to His name (2 Tim 2:20-21). But if you will continually disobey Him, choosing your will rather than His will, making choices that would grieve His Holy Spirit, following your feelings rather than God’s perfect will (Rom 12:2), then you will become ineffective and unproductive (2 Pet 1:5-9). Your life will become a mess rather than a joy. You will miss God’s perfect plan for your life. You will wake up one day full of regrets instead of a joyful anticipation of God’s rewards (2 Tim 4:8). Why miss out on such a great future for the sake of temporary pleasure? Be wise. Don’t exchange your birthright for a bowl of soup (Heb 12:15-17). Wake up now before it’s too late. Follow God’s ways rather than the ways of this world. Do not harden your heart if you hear His voice today (Heb 3:7-19). Respond in faith and obedience.
Join us for our new series this May entitled “Sound Barriers.” Based on the first few chapters of the Book of Hebrews, we will look at the common reasons why we sometimes don’t hear from God. God is a speaking God but we sometimes fail to hear His voice. This results in dire consequences in our lives. But as we explore this problem, we will see that all of these common reasons are actually avoidable. By the grace of God, we can discipline ourselves to listen well to God by avoiding these common pitfalls. Doing so will help us become more self-aware. Self-awareness in turn will lead us to personal growth and effectiveness as we trust in the Lord to deliver us from our hidden faults and willful sins (Psalm 19:12-14).