What God Thinks of Your Plans & Purpose
Early on in college, I had my whole 3-year plan mapped out.
I was going to graduate in 3 years.
I was going to be an education major.
I was going to someday teach.
But then my heart changed. I didn’t feel like that was the right path.
I completely changed my major to journalism and communication my sophomore year and could not tell you how many “plans” I had drawn up for myself. Through edits, the additions of business, graphic design, and leadership minors, and various experiences I never saw coming, my senior year (yes I ended up staying 4 years, not 3) began approaching and so did this idea of planning for the next step.
I tried not to be worried about this next unknown step… but being the multi-passionate person I am with a major that could take me in a lot of different directions, I found myself stressed and worried about where God wanted me these past few months.
I felt this pressure… to live up to what those around me were saying while also trying to live into this whole “purpose” thing that everyone says God has.
And while I truly 100% believe that God has a purpose for our lives, I’m realizing that this purpose is not a hit or miss thing. It’s truly not about all the things we try to do. It’s about what God does. So we could spend our whole lives worrying and wondering if we have lived up to this “purpose” God has for us…
OR we can simply draw near to Him and choose Him and let Him show us each new step.
For Romans 3:27 tells us, “God does not respond to what we do; we respond to what God does.”
Someone who I have loved reading about lately is Abraham. God turned Abraham, a total nobody, into a somebody. And Romans 4:17 tells us, “not because he got God’s attention by living like a saint, but because God made something out of Abraham when he was a nobody.”
Romans 4:2-3 reminds us that our stories our not our own stories. They are God’s stories, just as it was for Abraham. It says, “The story we’re given is a God-story, not an Abraham-story… Abraham entered into what God was doing for him, and that was his turning point. He trusted God to set him right instead of trying to be right on his own.”
It goes on to say, “The one who trusts God to do the putting-everything-right without insisting on having a say in it is one fortunate man.”
And that’s faith. It’s trusting in things we cannot see.
We can spend our lives planning and expectant upon every detail to be lived out, but unfortunately, life doesn’t always go according to plan. Sometimes God picks you up and sets you in another direction. And sometimes it’s not one you necessarily expect.
And what’s funny is… I just accepted a job offer that I never thought in a million years I would. It was totally not the “plan” I had for myself, but when this opportunity sort of fell into my lap, there was a peace I had about it. Yes, doors have been shut, but this door and others have certainly opened… God knows what I need, and He knows what you need too.
Romans 5:4 tells us we should “keep alert for whatever God will do next.” I don’t believe God wants us to know everything about our future. He doesn’t want us to have a map of our life with clear step-by-step directions. He wants us to trust Him. He wants us to wait eagerly at His feet, ready to do His work… no matter what that looks like to us or others.
So we must learn to enjoy the process, and embrace the journey. And not be so fixated on an end result that we don’t take time to love the little moments along the way.
For God tells us in Romans 3:28, “Our lives get in step with God and all others by letting Him set the pace, not by proudly or anxiously trying to run the parade.”
Life is a marathon. Not a sprint.
It’s a journey, and we don’t have all the answers. Nor will we ever here.
But what I want you to do is to quit putting this pressure to live out this “purpose” and simply show up for God. He knows what He’s doing in you.
So here I am. The girl who spent so much time and so many tears worrying about the next step and the unknown. The girl who is learning to simply look up and ask God for the next step instead of the whole path. The girl who realizes that her “purpose” is in God’s hands, not her own. She simply needs to just draw near to Him.
Have peace in knowing that’s all you need to do too.
p.s. If you want more on this, go check out the story of Mary and Martha in Luke 10, my friend! May we all be willing to sit at His feet and find rest in knowing our purpose lies in His hands.