“For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
Do you really believe this? If so, why do you get anxious and try to help God out with His plan for us? Have you ever had the feeling that His timing is a bit out of kilter, that He might have overlooked an event and needed your ingenuity to finish the job? Because the promise He gave you is slow in arriving, it is up to you to make it happen. Leaders who run fast and furiously to accomplish their dreams have a tendency to take steps ahead of God. What is the result? It creates problems for them and everyone else!
Abraham and Sarah have taught us a great lesson. God had promised them a child. (Genesis 15:4) Instead of waiting for God’s timing, they used human reasoning, passion and another human being, Hagar, to accomplish what apparently, God had forgotten to do. It made sense to Sarah. “I own the slave. I have the husband. I’ll get a child”, she must have thought to herself. It made sense to Abraham. “I am supposed to have a child. I have a willing wife to allow me an indiscretion (if one could only call it that). I own a slave. I’ll help God out.” The son from the sexual union was Ishmael. When one couple chose to help God out, this created long-lasting problems, in which the whole world is embroiled today!
The Hebrew hero, Moses (Numbers 20) was told to speak to the rock for water to drink. Instead, in anger and vexation with the people he led, he struck the boulder. Water gushed forth, but God said, “Moses, you’re over eighty years old, and you still haven’t learned to trust me. Because of your disobedience, you will not go into the promised land.” If we could only learn that lesson from others, our pain would be minimized!
Allowing the emotions of fleshly reasoning to rule creates obstacles of sorrow in the path of God’s leaders. It is all right to wonder what is going on in your life. As you try to figure out what God is planning, control your emotions of the moment, and place your trust in what God said He would do. Leaders cover more ground when the proverbial cart is behind the horse!