Have you ever just wanted shout, "It's someone else's turn!" You're tired of volunteering to bake the cookies, to organize the parent list, to clean up. You're always the one to organize the family reunion, to load the presentation into the computer, to shovel the walks? Please, can someone else be in charge?
Many in western culture are obsessed with tomorrow. People assume that tomorrow will come. There is a comfort that comes from thinking that tomorrow is another day. The problem is that there is no guarantee that tomorrow will come for you, for your children, for your country, for your planet.
As with most lies the enemy uses, it originates from a misapplied truth in 1 Corinthians 10:13 that talks about temptation and how when we are tempted, God always allows us a way to resist that temptation. We can't be tempted beyond what He's equipped us to bear. (But, even that is misapplied if it's done on our own strength.)
Here's a simple, step-by-step process to writing a life plan. If you don't know me, you wouldn't know that I prefer simple. If it's complicated or too involved, I'll opt out quickly. That's my goal here.
Some days you just feel pulled in seven different directions in a world that won't let go, don't you? A great breakfast with a friend and then walk six blocks home and some of the kids are sick so I had to take the girls to the dentist and before I knew it, it was four o'clock and things are still piling up
Too many live life full of regrets. The relationship that they lost. The vocation they never found. The job they were fired from. The place they have never lived. And this is how they see themselves.Formless. Void. Bottomless emptiness.
I was recently reminded of a story about holding on to old perceptions as retold by my friend Dan Black.
If you attend a circus you'll see elephants walking in meek compliance. If the trainer wants to keep them in an area, they tie a simple weak rope to a pole and walk away. It's crazy. These massive creatures could break just about anything humans could engineer.
I wrote the speech and then edited it, justifying and crafting every single word. Then I memorized it, hammering every inflection, timing every dramatic pause. As a high schooler I wasn't in athletics. Maybe it was the aspect of losing. Maybe it was because we couldn't afford shoes not available in the thrift store.
We followed the winding line of brake lights to the far side of the college campus, swinging into the first empty parking space we could find. We got out and walked quickly past dorms and large halls, and all around us there were people walking in the same direction, as if some irresistible force drew anyone within a one-mile radius.
Dobri Dobrev looks like a stereotypical homeless man. His grey hair and beard are long and matted. His clothes are old and threadbare. He is 100 years old and lost most of his hearing during World War II. Dobrev lives 15 miles outside of Sofia, Bulgaria, and rides the bus into town every day to beg from the people who live there. I'm sure those who pass him assume he is like any other beggar they have seen. But they would be wrong.
There is only one thing about tomorrow that you can know with certainty. God will be faithful to you. You can plan for tomorrow, and that is a good thing. But tomorrow may not go according to your plan. World events may radically change your life. Your car may not start. Your kids could get sick. Your financial situation could change.
A driver in Colorado dropped a lit cigarette down his jacket, and jumped out of the vehicle to remove it. However, his van kept rolling backwards, knocking him to the ground and rolling over his head. He is expected to survive. Meanwhile, a woman wanted for robbery called an Ohio police station to demand that they remove an unflattering mug shot of her from their website. The officer suggested she come in so they could discuss the situation. When she came into the station, he arrested her.
Life has many dark valleys. The ebola threat looms more ominous each day. ISIS, our borders, financial uncertainty, gender confusion, blatant disregard for God, all of these concerns are the fuel for the 24/7 news cycle.