Sunday, December 31, 2017

Take Comfort and Fair Warning

I have read Proverbs 16:9, approximately 1.4 gabatrillion times (or something like that).  I remember posting it on my bedroom wall as a teenager, not entirely understanding what it meant.  But then, when do we entirely understand the meaning of any scripture?

This morning, i opened the Bible reading app on my phone, and the verse of the day was Proverbs 16:9, "the mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps."

And then i burst out laughing.

If you've read my blog (back when i wrote it in more than twice a year), you know that the super hero and i have had lots of plans that haven't exactly come to fruition.

I imagine in my mind, a child of God who has prayed things like, "Lord please have your way in my life," and "please make me more like Jesus," in their walk of life, going to God for direction, and the Lord pointing His child down what appears to be a fairly enjoyable path, knowing full well (because God knows everything) that once His child has gotten thoroughly started down that path, a mountain is going to inexplicably plant itself top side down, directly in the way of what the child thought was the path he was to walk.

This might sound like i'm telling you that God is cruel and kind of a trickster, but that's not what i'm saying.  See, the Father knew about the mountain.  He knew about the mountain before the beginning of your life, before you were planted in your mother's womb.  And that ... that is a comfort to my soul.

A few minutes after i had burst into laughter over this literal proverbial warning, i was weeping in gratefulness to God that He is so good.  So good that he has been preparing me my whole life for the things that i will face, that He may or may not let me in on what's coming, and that i can take so much comfort in knowing that because He has plans for me for good, to prosper me, to give me hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11), that i can happily and easily trust Him with whether and what i need to know about what is to come.  It's such a place of perfect peace in the midst of what might appear to others to be calamity, but isn't.

If God were to tell me ahead of time all the things that i will face, i might be tempted to choose another path to avoid the mountain, or the hill, or the fire, or the lion.  But if the Father points me down a path where i will face the lion, then it is because He knows that He has prepared me to face the lion, and that facing the lion will make me stronger and more ready for the next challenge i will necessarily face in order for Him to answer my prayer to make me more like Jesus.

See how that works?

If we could understand this scripture closer to the beginning of our walks with the Lord, it might come with flashing lights and sirens.....WARNING  WARNING WARNING:  PLUMMETING MOUNTAINS, ANGRY LIONS, AND FOREST FIRES AHEAD!!!!!

But in the exact same message, take comfort, follow peace, because the good Father is at work in you to will and to work according to His good pleasure (Phillippians 2:13), i.e., to have His way in your life, that thing you asked Him for.

His perfect love is incomparable and intricate and complete.

Take comfort and fair warning:  you will make your plans, and they will probably be interrupted and possibly obliterated, but the Lord knew, and He will guide your steps.

Happy New Year!

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