Journal Ps 1-3 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)
Scripture: “Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and against his Anointed, saying,
“Let us burst their bonds apart and cast away their cords from us.”
He who sits in heaven laughs; the Lord holds them in derision.” Ps 2:1-4
Observation: Man plans, God laughs: Not what these 4 words convey exactly…well, maybe it does…
Analysis: I mentioned this little proverb to my wife the other night but couldn’t put my hand on why or where I remembered it. Lo, and behold—scripture to support my flighty thought.
The idea can be difficult to swallow. After all, I am supposed to plan, right? Proverbs talks all about planning. And there’s the rub…
The above from the Psalmist indicates a few things:
- Rage and planning to do something about it will always be in vain;
- Rebellion comes before planning for action;
- Independence from restraint.
To be sure the above three have to do with Man wanting independence from God (Original Sin of Adam—the precedent of disobedience). I want to make my own way, I don’t need God, I will worship Him as I like: all rooted from Adam way back when and lodged in Man’s DNA.
If I get bent out of shape thinking my “planning efforts” are not needed or serious, when I consider it from His Omniscient perspective, I must at least snicker at myself. Seriously: I plan and try to see it through to the end I desire—and I am going to do that without God involved? Whom am I trying to fool?
- “Commit your work to the LORD and your plans will be established.” Prov 16:3
- “The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.” Prov 16:9
- “Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand.” Prov 19:21
The difference, then, is planning outside of engaging God. That sort of planning is evil, and God mocks at it.
Does that mean I shouldn’t plan? Just glide along the winds of whatever spirit blows me along.
Seriously? Of course not. As a disciple, I am driven with PURPOSE—to pursue God with my every breath. That sort of chasing down maturity takes planning.
But, so does the grocery store.
Therefore, my little interlude of Proverbs indicates 3 things:
- Commit my plans to the LORD. He will establish them.
- If I forget to consciously commit my plans to the LORD, He will still order my steps.
- Finally, I can think of many plans, BUT only HIS PURPOSE will reign.
It is probably good for me to remember that “grumbling and complaining” is closely related to “rage.” I don’t have to be all out pounding my fist and stomping my feet for God to take notice.
When I sin, I don’t “sin” against anybody more than I sin against the Most High God. I sin against Him first and foremost no matter what my sin is. Good for me to remember.
Prayer: Father, I think one of the harder things to do pursuing You, is this “planning” thing—and the resulting grumbling and complaining when plans fail—at least failing to MY POV.
I can imagine, when I plan and neglect even thinking about You, asking what YOU would have me do, your chuckle and softly shaking your head back and forth.
I am glad you are patient with me.