Some of you, if you follow me on Facebook, know that we had a serious family situation arise a little before Christmas. Our Christmas traditions were done a little differently with my husband’s family to accommodate the situation. And recently, we have seen much improvement in our loved one. But…today. Today we are back almost to where we started in December.
Sometimes, we don’t know what God’s plan is in any given situation. It can seem like we are walking blind not knowing which way to go except to put one foot in front of the other and hope for the best. Yet let me share that God does have a plan and a purpose in all He does. “Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” (Proverbs 19:21) His work is for His glory and it is always for our good. (Romans 8:28)
So, when God’s plan isn’t evident, what are we to do?
We are to trust in our holy God. “He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the Lord.” (Psalm 112:7) Our God is never without reason for what He allows to happen in our lives. When we put our trust, wholeheartedly, into who He is, there is comfort that what we endure is not endured alone or in vain. Trusting in the Lord means relying on Him and having confidence in His design of things. Proverbs 29:25 says, “…whoever trusts in the LORD is safe.” Often we want to put our trust in the things and people of this world but our trust ought to be completely in our heavenly Father. We can trust that God is always present and always working in the situation at hand. “Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” (Proverbs 19:21)
We must keep the faith. Trust and faith truly walk hand in hand. If we trust the Lord with all our concerns then we carry a faith in Him that supersedes what we’re going through. Having faith in an omniscient (all knowing) God will help us hold on through each day. Ask the Lord to grow your faith in Him and to remind you that He “is a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.” (Psalm 9:9) He does not leave us when the going gets tough. Instead, He carries us and leads us. God is sovereign in all things and we need to surrender our will to Him understanding He knows what is best. “For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” (1 John 5:4)
We are to be on our knees. Although this seems so obvious, we don’t always fall to our knees in prayer when trying times come upon us. However, it should be the first place we go. We need to “seek the Lord and His strength, seek his face continually!” (1 Chronicles 16:11) If we seek Him, we will find Him. “But from there you will seek the LORD your God and you will find him, if you search after him with all your heart and with all your soul.” (Deuteronomy 4:29) Ask God to give you a wholehearted desire to seek and find Him. In finding Him, we can lay our heart and its contents in His hands and find reassurance in an omnipotent (all powerful) Lord. For nothing is impossible with God. (Luke 1:37) Prayer is where we can lay it all down in submission to His will and find peace that surpasses all understanding. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
We are to be in the Word. Not much to say about this but to open the Bible and find comfort in the words written there. Remember “Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.” (Proverbs 30:5)
Lastly, a practical approach would be to keep a journal. Write down what happens (or doesn’t happen), put scripture God gives you, jot down prayers and thoughts, and all answers to prayer. This journal will be an encouraging reflection of a good and purposeful God in the days to come. “For this is the will of God, your sanctification.” (1 Thessalonians 4:3)
God always has a plan and we may not know it in the moment or even for a while after. That’s okay. Some mysteries of God are not for us to know until He decides. Yet we can pray that our suffering will produce in us an attitude of gratefulness and humility towards our heavenly Father. Deuteronomy 31:8 says, “It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” Always we should pray for trust and faith in Him. He is sovereign and good.