[CF Devotionals] 2015-04-22 - God's Plan, Not Ours

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There are times we have a preconceived notion of how God should work out his plan, and whom he will use to accomplish it. I am no different, when it comes to imagining whom he may or may not use, including myself or those around me. I mean, if Moses doubted his ability to carry out God’s wishes effectively, then who am I to think that my part of his plan could even be remotely interesting? But here I am, also made in the Creator’s image, and put here for a reason. And yet I have heard stipulations of who is fit to do this, and heard that taught by people who are as flawed as the ones written about all over the Bible, which are clearly used to achieve the goals of a most powerful being who just has to speak and make something happen in His name. Think about the fact that no other action is required by God, than to speak, for his thought to literally be completed. Since I cannot do that, it may be best for me to look at what words he used and whom he spoke through to fulfill his plan, forgetting my own preconceived notions.

A dear friend of mine took an unusual path, that led her to become the pastor of two small churches in a rural area for about five years. To me, what was most unusual about it is that she didn’t necessarily see herself in that role, prior to it happening. Having had a couple of pastors in my own family history, it seemed that very often there was at least an inkling of it along the way. In her case, although being a woman of faith and coming from a home of faith, I don’t think it ever occurred to her that’s where God would eventually place her. Yet, all that had transpired in her life, before that point, was preparation for his plan coming to fruition. There were many unlikely places that God’s glory is found in the Bible. Many were people which God filled with gifts to glorify him. And in addition to their gift, was their ability to reach a certain group of people, due to their own connection with them. The Samaritan woman at the well, dealing with her personal relationship struggles, would be able to reach an entirely different group than Paul - who was a man who now fought for God’s people, rather than once killing them. God uses men, women and children in a variety of ways to show his sovereignty.

My friend has a wonderful gift of listening, empathizing and letting God pull his thoughts about their situation from her mind, to give them comfort. Much of what has taken place in her life has led her to slow down and take note of things that she maybe once had only very briefly observed. I know she would never compare herself to any of God’s mighty leaders, yet like Moses, she often now feels as though she is stumbling literally and figuratively through thoughts and words, trying to allow the spirit to move as God intends. She doesn’t see what I have seen, especially more recently over the last several months. And what a shame for us to miss out on God’s blessings because of how we think His love should look and be presented to us. What I have seen first-hand is proof of how he takes all of our weak vessels, and exploits them, to verify that his glory reigns and always will. He uses the tired, hungry, injured, emotionally and physically battered to help others heal spiritually. Through that process, we are shown how anything is possible, when placed in His loving hands. I am so grateful for her continued willingness to allow God to work in and through her, in spite of any people’s doubts or even her own along the way, as she has traveled most recently, through a physically and emotionally difficult path. Are you letting him work through you? To God be the glory!!

“But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’” Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use?” (Romans 9:20-21 NIV)

“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9 NIV)

“But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere.” (2 Corinthians 2:14 NIV)

“Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God, or whether I speak on my own.” (John 7:17 NIV)

“Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” (1 Corinthians 2:12-14)

“Meanwhile, Saul(later called Paul) was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem. As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” (Acts 9:1-4 NIV)

“One of those listening was a woman from the city of Thyatira named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth. She was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul’s message.”(Acts 16:14 NIV)

“Now Deborah, a prophet, the wife of Lappidoth, was leading Israel at that time. She held court under the Palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites went up to her to have their disputes decided. “ (Judges 3:4-5 NIV)

“Most blessed of women be Jael, the wife of Heber the Kenite, most blessed of tent-dwelling women. He asked for water, and she gave him milk; in a bowl fit for nobles she brought him curdled milk. Her hand reached for the tent peg, her right hand for the workman’s hammer. She struck Sisera, she crushed his head, she shattered and pierced his temple. At her feet he sank, he fell; there he lay. At her feet he sank, he fell; where he sank, there he fell–dead.” (Judges 5:24-27 NIV)

“And gather the entire assembly at the entrance to the tent of meeting.” Moses did as the Lord commanded him, and the assembly gathered at the entrance to the tent of meeting. Moses said to the assembly, “This is what the Lord has commanded to be done.” (Leviticus 8:3-5 NIV)

“Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. And because of his words many more became believers. They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.” (John 4:39-42 NIV)

[email deborah] cfpraydeb@gmail.com

All scripture references are from the King James Version (KJV) unless otherwise noted.

CFD | April 2015 | Deborah's Devotions | Yesterday's Devotion | Devotional Topics