How much pressure do you feel to be well planned? Where’s that pressure coming from? I find myself reflecting today on the carefree planning of God, and how we are invited into that place of order and trust.
I’ve been listening to the birds singing this morning. There’s a definite change in season going on, and as far as I’m concerned, Spring has finally arrived with the ducks showing up on our front lawn quacking and trying to impress a mate.
There’s a flurry in the air. We know that Spring is coming, and somehow the birds know it’s coming, but it’s hard to say that they’re actually planning for it, in the way that we humans think of planning.
This is a great comfort to me, as I’ve still not worked out if I’m a planner or not. Even after all these years, I can seem to be as haphazard as ever, caught up in the moment, late for things, distracted and dissipated. And yet I have more lists and hopes written than most. I even write conversations with myself to help to clarify thoughts and actions! (I know, bear with me).
But the birds… Even Jesus said,
Consider the lilies of the field…. Consider the birds of the air. They do not sow or reap, and yet look how God cares for them! *
A lot of my ‘planning’ is actually rooted in fear, and in a sense of self-protection. It’s not ‘carefree in the care of God’ (The Message Version) But there’s also a whole lot of change that can spontaneously come into my life that is indeed Spirit-inspired preparation for the season – a season I’m perhaps yet unaware of.
Who is planning here?
‘Man plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps.’ **
We’re not as clever as we think we are, but he absolutely is. Whatever our plans, God is having his good way with us, and Spring is on its way!
* “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6v25-34
** “The mind of man plans his way,
But the Lord directs his steps.” Prov 16:9