Today, my wife and I have been married for seven years. Hard to believe.
I’ve completed a bachelor’s and a Master’s degree. I’ve got a house and a job. Not too bad.
But the one thing I don’t have?
A master plan.
How many people went to church this weekend and heard something about finding God’s “plan” for your life? I am certain that there were many, many sermons preached about finding the grand and glorious plan that God has already mapped out for you. If only we can figure out God’s plan, then we’ll be set. Google “God’s plan” and thousands of results will come up, all about focusing, finding, and following God’s plan for you.
You know, I’m still younger than a lot of you in blog-land. I haven’t been married as long or worked as long. But I have figured something out at this point in my life…
…God isn’t going to tell us the plan. God’s plan is on a need-to-know basis, and apparently, He thinks we don’t need to know.
Get In the Car
Recently, I gave a hypothetical scenario to a group of kids. Imagine your parents pick you up after school and say, “Get in the car, we are going on a trip.” ”Where are we going?” you ask. ”It’s a secret, just get in the car!”
Mom and Dad have packed all your stuff for you. They have snacks. But you don’t know where you’re going or how long it’s going to take.
Most kids would still get in the car. Because they know their parents. They know they can trust them enough to get in the car even if they don’t know where they are going.
The problem is, most of us adults don’t have that kind of trust with God. If Jesus himself drove up to our house and said, “Get in,” we’d have some questions we’d want answered.
“Where are we going?”
“How long is this going to take?”
“What do I need?”
We would waste a bunch of time trying to figure out what Jesus had planned before we agreed to go along. And that is how most of us live our lives. We are obsessed with finding things out, especially as they relate to us and our lives. We want to know where we are headed, how we are getting there, how long it will take, and what will we need.
And we won’t budge until we have all those questions answered.
At the age of thirty, I have concluded that we are praying a bunch of prayers and listening to a bunch of sermons that God is just not going to answer.
God does not tell us the future. He’s not a fortune teller. We’re lucky if we get little glimpses every once in a while of where we are going.
At my age, I’m finally old enough to be able to look backward and see God’s plan being worked out, like looking in the rear-view mirror. And to be honest, it turned out very differently (but often much better, or at least more interesting than I could’ve planned.) But it takes a lot of time and perspective to be able to see God’s providence at work. I couldn’t see God in the moment. I was sitting in the backseat of the car, while Jesus had the map.
Know God, Not the Plan
The secret to finding out God’s plan for you life isn’t to keep asking God to tell you the plan.
It’s to get in the freaking car and go. It doesn’t matter where God is taking you. Just go.
The reality is none of us know where God is taking us. The people who say they know are lying. And our obsession with knowing the plan is just our obsession with control. We want to know so we can feel more in control of our destinies.
God has never promised to tell us the plan for our lives. He has only promised that if we want to, we can know Him.
We can know Him.
The reason kids could get in the car with their parents without knowing where they are going is because they know their parents. And the reason most of us are obsessed with knowing God’s plan is because we don’t really know Him. Faith is not knowing the plan. It’s going even if you don’t know the plan. And faith comes from knowing God.
God hasn’t promised a plan. He’s promised Himself.
What do you think? Have we been tricked into worshipping our own desire for control?