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Lord Willing

Lord Willing

Words of Faith 5-21-2020

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy © 2020

Faith Fellowship Church - Melbourne, FL

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James 4:13-17

         Now listen, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money."   Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, "If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that." As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil. Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins.


     We are certainly a culture of planners.  These days if you haven't been to a seminar and made a "life plan" with a mission statement, you obviously are headed nowhere fast. And losing your online calendar program is tantamount to losing your brain. 

      So how can James really criticize those who have direction?  Doesn't the Bible say that "Without vision-- the people perish..."  (Proverbs 29:18)?  That is actually where we make a big mistake-- we confuse "vision" (which is from God) with the "plans of men.”

      The Word teaches us the difference between the vision of God and the plans of men. "The Lord foils the plans of the nations; he thwarts the purposes of the peoples. But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations" (Ps. 33:10-11). "Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed" (Prov. 16:3).  "In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps" (Prov. 16:9).  "Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails" (Prov. 19:21). 

       So.  Are we to live without any plan?  Not at all.  But our plan must be to pursue God's vision for our lives, not just to dream something up and then ask for God's blessing.  

        There is a lovely saying that is heard in some parts of the country that flows out of this passage-- "I will be there next spring... Lord willing."  That is the key to any plan we make. Give God the flexibility to adjust and even change the course of life.  The truth is that our "plans" can often make it more painful for God to use us the way he wants to use us.  When we obligate the future with commitments or financial obligations, we either limit what we expect God to do in our lives or we make it rather painful to pull away from those plans.  This is one of the reasons why many Christian authors teach us to avoid debt.

         I have a friend who is fond of saying: "I want to be smack dab in the middle of God's will for my life."  There is no more blessed place than in His will.  And to know that will and not be in it or not be able to get into it because of some obligation is sin.  "Anyone, then, who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins."  That is to say, it clearly falls short of the mark God is aiming for in our lives.

       Where are you today?  Are you where God wants you to be?  Not some dream of where someone else says you should be, but where GOD wants you to be?  Our only plan is the plan to be available when He calls and reveals that to us.



      Lord, I realize that this life is passing like mist that appears for a while in the eternal picture of things and then is gone.  So, I want nothing more than to make this life count for You.  Show me how to do that. Give me Your vision for my life.  In Jesus' Name. Amen.


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© Jeffrey D. Hoy 2009, 2020

Dr. Jeffrey D. Hoy - Faith Fellowship Church (EFCA)        

2820 Business Center Blvd.

Melbourne, Florida 32940 (321)-259-7200

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The Words of Faith devotion is published five days a week by E-mail excluding Federal holidays. Please feel free to forward this devotion to a friend who might be blessed by this devotion. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is quoted from the New International Version (R) of The Holy Bible. Copyright (c) 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved. Words of Faith (c) 1997, 2010 Jeffrey D. Hoy. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to forward this copyrighted material or use portions of it with appropriate notation of the source for non-profit purposes.