[Dear readers, I mixed up the order of this topic a bit. I appreciate your understanding. There is a reason.]
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. – Jer 29:11 ESV
Before you were born. God knew you would exist. He planned for you to be here. He knew you while you were being knit together in your mother’s womb. He made plans for you. He wants to tell you His plans for you. Now that you have returned, or will soon return, he wants to show you what He will do in your life.
I argued with God, “How can you say you have made plans for me when my life has been so messed up?!?”
“God, I have messed up my life so much, there is NO WAY you can restore me to the plans you made for me!”
After 20 years of running, about 6 years ago, I returned to God. I had repented. I had confessed. I felt the cleansing wash of forgiveness and grace consume me, and drive me through the rapids right over the fall, deep in to His mercy. And I was made whole again.
And He held me. He loved me. And he welcomed me home. He let me rest a bit. I was tired from all that running from Him. And he healed my hurts, most of them self inflicted, some not so much. He soothed my anger. And I am not angry, now. He fed me through daily readings of His Word. He listened as I prayed, and talked to me when I listened. For the first time in my life, I knew what it meant to be still, and know God. And it was GOOD.
And then he told me what He has planned for me. You don’t get to know what that is, because it is personal, and strictly between God, Me and my family. And it will bear fruit only when I obey and submit.
This is what God will do with you, too. He will take you through the same steps. He will then tell you all about why you even exist. That was always a big question for me. Why do I exist? Like the Psalm says,
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.” Psalm 139:14 – 16 ESV
He has known all about you, how you were made, that you are created because He has a plan for you. He has every day of your life numbered, and, if you will, He will show you what he plans for your life, and it will be Good.
What will God do for all that time you have spent away from His presence? God is in the miracle working field. It is part of His resume. He will take every wrong turn and make it make sense, and make it right, and you will learn from your past, as you forgive yourself of your past.
God will then Set your feet firmly in the eternal today. By that I mean, you will begin to recognize that, especially at first, you will need to be still, and just have today. Pray today. Listen today. Read His word today. Go to bed, and repeat that process. And as you develop obedience to this process, He will talk to you in that “still small voice”. He will make certain scriptures show up just as you need to read them, and you will begin to see a pattern. The Bible will be come for your heart and mind what good food is to your body. And you will grow.
As you grow, your love of God will grow, your praise of what Jesus Christ will increase, and you will see that you have been forgiven much, and you will know you are now the brother or sister of Jesus Christ, and He intends to share His inheritance with you. And you will see that all those broken roads have led you right to the loving embrace of Christ and his forgiveness of you. And you will understand:
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 ESV
“But what about all the hurtful things I have done to others and others have done to me?”
I asked that too.
You will learn to forgive, and you will find a way to seek forgiveness from those you have hurt. You will be led by the grace of God to seek out any one you have done wrong, and seek restitution. You will understand the importance of laying your offerings down at the altar, and seeking forgiveness of others. Then you will see that your offering has been made worthy. And you will understand what it means to love one another.
This IS part of the plan. To be free from your sin and guilt, and to be set free from the debt you owe others.
“What if they don’t forgive me?”
Some will, some might not.
You cannot control what others will do and will not do. You can only obey the will of God. To be like Jesus Christ is God’s will for you. And you just need to obey. You will be amazed how free your soul feels after you have done this.
The growth and completion of your character will take the rest of your life. That is the good and the bad news. But the best news is that, in the book of John, chapter 15, we can read how Jesus promised you he will send the Holy Spirit to walk beside you, and teach you as you grow and go.
His will is that you be just like Jesus Christ.
That is His will.
And as you begin to do this, you will discover you have certain gifts, some spiritual, some material, some physical talents. And you will discover that all these gifts complement each other, and you will hear the voice of the Spirit of God guide you in the practice of using these gifts to glorify the Father, that others will be drawn to the saving grace of Jesus Christ.
God will tell you of His plans for you.
“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6
Like I said, I know what God’s plan is for my life. About 4 months ago, he began preparing me for my calling. About 6 or 7 weeks ago, he put me in a place and time that I am more able to pursue this plan.
I promise you, that now you have returned to Him, he will take you through all these steps. And He will show you His plans for you, and they are GOOD!
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” – Jer 29:11 ESV