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When Life Doesn't Look Like We Planned

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jer. 29:11

I remember sitting in bible study years ago and hearing a devotion about this verse. A woman was sharing about a disappointment in her life and that this verse was an encouragement.

This verse is true. God does know and does have a plan for us.

I remember sitting there and thinking that this meant nothing bad will happen to me. It says it right there in the bible that I will prosper and not be harmed.

All I have to do is follow God by checking all the boxes.

At that point in my life I had some hard. I had suffered through infertility- which is heartbreaking. But I had two little tow headed kids in the church nursery all cute in their Baby Gap. I had endured my suffering and God blessed me. Check. I am done. Let’s keep on with all this prospering and non harming.

All through my Christian walk I have latched on to all kinds of verses ,promises, ideas that appeal to a rule following, people pleasing good girl like me.

Trust and Obey- for there is no there way to be happy in Jesus than to trust and obey

God will heal all your diseases - you need to have the faith of a mustard seed

Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it

Be a Proverbs 31 woman and your kids and your husband will rise up and call you blessed

So many boxes to check.

I have tried to check all those boxes. When life didn't turn out the way I thought it should, I tried harder, ran faster. After all that running , I realized and am still realizing that I have missed the point. My walk with Christ has been about the scenery and the destination. If I do all the right things it will be a pleasant ride.

I forget over and over again that it is about the companion, Christ. He walks with me and loves me and I am to follow him.

I am always in his hands.

That young mom sitting in her bible study didn’t know what was ahead for her. I didn't know that I would watch my sister die, and also both my parents and mother in law. I didn't know I would walk through the pain of adoption, mental illness, FASD and RAD. I didn't know that there would be so many things in my life that would hurt and continue to hurt every day. I did not anticipate how Covid 19 would alter our world. These situations don’t get tied up in a neat tidy package at the end of the day.

Amy, back then, would have been terrified to know this was coming down the path. How are these supposed to give me a hope and a future?

At times I have allowed myself to be bitter about the hard. I have tried to figure why God has allowed these things in my life.

I want to know the purpose.

But when I complain,obsess over it and try to figure it out I am not trusting God.

Once again, I have missed the point. When I keep focusing on the scenery and not my companion all I can see are the valleys and the steep hills I have been asked to climb. When I stop and look at my companion my perspective changes.

God knows the plans He has for me, I am to follow.

I do not need to know why or where the journey will take me next week or next year. I need to trust that He has what I need. Then take the next step in front of me. This is actually a much better and peaceful way to walk through life. The other way, which I have done for most of my life is exhausting. That way has me looking back with regret, scanning the horizon with fear and carrying a big pack of good girl rules hoping I will have an easy path. It is too much.

I am to follow Christ who gives me everything I need.

I am also to walk in His footsteps.

I am to remember that with every single step I take he is with me.

What path are you walking today? It may seem hard and steep but remember you are in his hands.

Send me a note or comment and let me know how I can pray for and encourage you on this journey.

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