“The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.” Proverbs 16:9 (English Standard Version)
As we close out this past year of 2020 and look forward to a new year starting tomorrow, my heart is filled with so many plans for ways to do better and be better in 2021. There is just something about the prospect of getting to start fresh in a new year, that causes me to commit (and re-commit) to plans that I hope will result in growth and change for me, personally and professionally.
It’s good to make plans—I believe that with everything within me. Yet I know that often the plans I make get pushed to the side as life’s path twists and turns in unexpected ways. To be honest, as I look back to review this past year, I feel as though many of the plans I made did not come to fruition–at least in ways I thought they would. There is a temptation to let this discourage me and cause me to feel like a failure. But I will NOT do that! I have made (and will continue to make) my plans to chart my course, with the hope and belief that I can achieve that which will result in a successful outcome. However, because experience has taught me, and the Word confirms it–I can plan my way as I journey through the days, weeks and months of this year, BUT it is the LORD, who directs my steps and establishes them.
Proverbs 16:3 (New Living Translation) is another verse that helps me to get the proper perspective on planning: “Commit your actions to the LORD, and your plans will succeed.” Life is messy and hard and because we cannot see what is ahead, committing our ways and actions to God, is really the only way we can succeed, according to His definition of success.
Perhaps, as we look back on this past year, we will see that our plans didn’t work out quite like we thought they would, but upon closer examination, we realize that it was God’s way of establishing our steps, so we would arrive at this place according to His perfect plan for us. We can move into the new year with confidence, knowing our plans when submitted and committed to God, will succeed.
We can be assured that God indeed “causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (Romans 8: 28, NLT) We also know that according to Ephesians 2:10, that we are Gods’ master piece, created anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
In all my planning, I know I want to do only those good things God has planned for me to do, as He directs and establishes my steps day by day. I am excited and thrilled (and, yes, even a bit nervous), to see what God has in store for 2021. Though, I most assuredly do not know all the LORD has planned for me and my loved ones, I do know that the LORD is the only one who can make me able to live out His wonderful plans for me.