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Destiny and Detours – Plan or Presence?

Trail GuideKey Bible Verse:  The paths of the Lord are true and right, and righteous people live by walking in them.  But sinners stumble and fall along the way. Hosea 14:9

Bonus ReadingPsalm 139:1-12, 23-24

People are constantly inquiring about how they can discover God’s plan for their lives.  Years ago I began first to doubt and then to disbelieve that God has a specific plan for me because it seemed to me that would run contrary to His purpose.  God’s overriding purpose is our maturity, and maturity can’t be reached by plan.

I think we North Americans are very arrogant to assume that all the principles that applied to the great leaders of the Scripture—Moses or Abraham or Joseph or David—apply to us as individuals.  I don’t know why we don’t rather apply to ourselves the principles of the followers among the children of Israel.

I’m sure that God does have an overall plan and those who are specifically involved in it are going to know about it, for He’s going to tell them, even coerce them, as He did Jonah.  But for most of us, His purpose is our maturity.

It has struck me that none of the saints whose writings I’ve read over the years talk about a specific plan that God has for his or her life.  They talk about the presence rather than the plan.  It seems that when you have a guide you don’t need a map.  We often try to substitute a program for His presence.

— Sr.Fred Smith in Texas

My Response: I’ll pray to be more absorbed with the Guide than with His guidance.

Thought to Apply: The center of God’s will is our only safety.

—Betsie Ten Boom (Dutch concentration camp victim)


Prayer for the Week:  Lord, decrease my preoccupation with my destination and increase my concern for the process  You are using to shape my character.
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