Have you ever heard someone say, “God’s timing is perfect”? I did, just today. It’s a phrase we like to use when God seems slow in answering our prayers. Peter calls out that big old elephant in the room for us. He starts out by explaining that God’s clock works differently than ours. “A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day.”
Is that a helpful reminder for you? Are you waiting on God for something big in your life to happen? It seems like we are always waiting for something, whether it’s a job promotion, finding the right house to move into, getting pregnant, getting married, being able to retire and start living life the way you want. What is it for you? When we welcome God and expect him to move in these life events, we can trust he is working out the “best” solution for us. Could that be why one of the gifts of the spirit is “patience”? We must continue to wait.
The contrast could not be clearer between the plans given to Absalom by his two advisors. The quick and simple plan of Ahithophel is probably the best plan for Absalom’s victory. While the plan outlined by David’s true ally, Hushai, over complicates the situation. Hushai is a master of double talk and makes the case for his own plan to be better than Ahithophel’s. Better for David to be sure.
Any time we find ourselves in the planning phase of any project, there are bound to be differences of opinions between leadership. How do you pick the best plan? Seeking guidance through prayer is my first go-to. But it hasn’t always been that way. For many years, I relied on my own ideas.
We’re seeing a lot of the same wisdom being repeated over
and over. Some of these themes are don’t seek revenge, fear the Lord, don’t be
lazy, and don’t associate with rebels. These are all good reminders. I much
prefer the “do this” examples of wisdom. After all, when we are told “not” to
do something, aren’t we more inclined to want to do it? I can just picture
someone saying, “don’t look now, but…” What happens? The other person will undoubtedly
So, the verse I’d like to focus on today is a “do this” instance.
“Do your planning and prepare your fields before building your house.”
We are not currently planning to build a house, but here in Mexico that would
certainly be a possibility. We would definitely need to plan well, which would
include finding a contractor with a good reputation and work ethic. I see this nugget
of wisdom as reminding us of the importance of preparation. We shouldn’t rush
to have something we aren’t ready for.
Are you a planner? Do you schedule your life down to the
last minute? Sometimes that’s exactly what we need to do when we have a busy
life. I still keep a calendar, so I’ll know where I’m supposed to be when, who
I’m supposed to talk to, what activity I need to get done (like today is dog
nail clipping day). If I don’t schedule something, it might not happen. Life, busy
work, and trivial things all have a way of oozing into the nooks and crannies
of time and pretty soon the day is over.
There are several proverbs in today’s reading that seem a bit connected. Being that “quality time” is my love language, these really spoke to me. Verse 1, “We can make our own plans, but the Lord gives the right answer.”Verse 3, “Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.” Verse 9, “We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.” What do we see here? Planning is a good thing, but God needs to be part of our process.