They went to Phrygia, and then on through the region of Galatia. Their plan was to turn west into Asia province, but the Holy Spirit blocked that route. So they went to Mysia and tried to go north to Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus wouldn't let them go their either. Acts 16:6-7 The Message
We all have plans. Sometimes our plans aren't the same as God's plan for our lives. Today I have a simple example of a plan I had that wasn't God's plan. And when I say simple, it is very simple, not a life changing event in itself - other than what God taught me from the outcome.
Over the past couple of days I have been working with my parents to complete a 500 piece jigsaw puzzle (as I said, not a life changing event in itself). We had found all the edge pieces and put them in place. I had separated out all the pieces for the rafters at the top of the puzzle and the floor tiles at the bottom of the puzzle. My plan was that we would do those sections first, and then complete the middle section.
However, as we resumed our puzzle work the next day, we didn't use any of those pieces, rather I worked on the left hand side of the puzzle and my parents on the middle section. There was no discussion about this new plan, it just happened and flowed that way. Thankfully I wasn't stubbornly attached to my plan which could have made the whole experience a little stressful and controlling for my mum and dad! And in fact the rafters and floor tiles ended up being the last part of the puzzle to be completed.
God had reminded me that His plans are so often different to our plans, and they are always best.
Following on in Paul's story above ...
That night Paul had a dream: A Macedonian stood on the far shore and called across the sea, "Come over to Macedonia and help us!" The dream gave Paul his map. We went to work at once getting things ready to cross over to Macedonia. All the pieces had come together. We knew now for sure that God had called us to preach the good news to the Europeans. Acts 16:9-10 The Message
All the pieces had come together - only God knows the big picture. He knows how it all fits together. Sometimes we don't even know what piece we are to connect to on the right, left, top or bottom - but He knows. All we have to do is listen and obey. Although that is easier said than done, because it involves us relinquishing control and trusting God.
Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don't try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he's the one who will keep you on track. Proverbs 3:5-6 The Message
Questions for today, is there something in your life that you have made a plan for? Have you surrendered that plan to God, allowing Him to have His way? Are you prepared to accept His changes to your plan, in a submissive and trusting way? If this is a struggle for you, as it is for most of us human beings with our own free will, let's repent and ask God right now to help us to submit to Him in all we do.
My soul, wait only upon God and silently submit to Him; for my hope and expectation are from Him. Psalm 62:5 AMP