It’s not ultimately about us and our plans, but God and His plans.
“Teach us to number our days rightly, that we may gain a heart of wisdom…”
— Psalm 90:12
“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.”
— Proverbs 16:9
One of the beautiful things about God being in charge, and not us, is this: When it’s all said and done, it’s His plans that count.
Media, news, and “social media influencers” tell us that we need to build our careers, pursue our dreams, fight for our rights, and work hard to prove that we’re good enough. It can feel overwhelming trying to do all the things that the world around us seems to ask of us (and even the church, sometimes). The younger people among us especially hear messages like this often: “Don’t just settle for ordinary!” “Use Your Influence!” “Change your world!”
God isn’t one more item on our to-do list. He is our Creator, watching (some of) us chase our tails and waiting for us to look to Him.
God knit us together in our mothers’ wombs; He knew each one of our days before any of them came to be (Psalm 139). He loved us and called each of us to be His; He has prepared good works in advance for us to do (Ephesians 2:10). We love Him in return, because He first loved us. He loved us so much that he gave us Christ on the cross. As a mother, the idea of giving up a son is unthinkable — and yet that’s what God did for us!
An illness (maybe even terminal), or a pregnancy, or a trauma can throw us a long way from the course we had planned. It can feel soul-destroying to work hard on something — whether a business, an education, a home — only to feel like your hopes have been smashed. Sometimes they really have been. Fortunately, we don’t have to prove that we’re good enough for God: He already loves us. We don’t have to prove that we have enough value to keep around — He knew all of your worth before you were born. When the world around us can’t see it, our Creator knows us completely. He knew this would happen, and He yet has things for us to do.
As we continue to pray, give, write letters, and use the talents God has given us, let’s not forget what James says about not taking tomorrow for granted, and remembering that it’s not us in charge of our lives (James 4:13-15). We plan our courses, but it is the Lord who directs our steps — sometimes in ways we don’t expect.
When we feel like giving up, He is there with us in the pain and confusion. He takes brokenness and pain and turns them into something better. In all of the discussions about life and death, sometimes we forget that it’s not about our plans and schemes. We don’t have the world on our shoulders. It’s actually all in His hands.
Father God, we thank You for the gift of life. Thank You for the elderly who live among us; thank You for the little ones and everyone in between. Thank You for the contributions you enable from people who the world looks down on; thank You for the way You use each of us, regardless of how the world looks at us. Thank You for the things you do in response to our prayers — for the politicians who have stood up and been counted, and for the pray-ers who have spent time together with each other and with You. Please renew our strength to keep running the race — and please teach us to number our days rightly, so that we will gain hearts of wisdom as we lay aside our own plans and ambitions to pursue Yours. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Prayer Points for October 2020
1. Pray for a Breakthrough for LIFE, specifically an end to abortion and euthanasia in our nation. Exodus 20:13
2. Pray for a Breakthrough for INDIGENOUS LIFE, specifically an end to high youth suicide and premature death due to ill health. 3 John 1:2
3. Pray for new POLITICIANS for LIFE, especially pray for the upcoming elections in Queensland (31st October) + USA (3 November). Proverbs 29:2
4. Pray for the Revitalisation of SPIRITUAL LIFE, namely repentance, renewal & transformation, that our nation might return to God. 2 Chronicles 7:14
Alison Keen resides in Warragul, Victoria with her husband and children. After finishing high school Alison completed a double bachelor’s degree in computer science and Communications Engineering. Her heart is for her own generation. The flood of information — true and otherwise — means that it is hard for the truth of the gospel to be heard over the top of the cacophony of TV streaming, selfies, memes, and ads. She believes it is important that the truth be presented in a way which upholds biblical values of truth and righteousness and encourages wise decisions.
We invite you to join the daily 1-hour Zoom video National Prayer Call every night:
DATES: 1st– 31st October 2020
TIME: 8pm-9pm AEST
ZOOM URL LINK: https://zoom.us/j/776881184
ZOOM MEETING ID: 776881184
See Zoom tutorial here.
Daily devotions brought to you by the Canberra Declaration.