One of the most important things in life is following God’s plan. But sometimes that plan seems like a great big puzzle. The Lord once said to me, “A puzzle is not a beautiful picture until you take each piece and connect the puzzle together.”
I don’t know if you have ever put a puzzle together, but when there is a lot of blue sky, trees, or water, it’s tempting to try and make a piece fit where it doesn’t belong. You leave it there for a while because you think, “This has to be the right piece. I’ve hunted and hunted and can’t find another piece that fits here!” But in your heart, you know it doesn’t fit. Then suddenly, you find the right piece that matches the spot, and it makes a beautiful picture!
That’s the way it is with God’s plan for our lives. Maybe we only have one or two puzzle pieces in our hand. Or perhaps several pieces are missing, and we can’t figure out what the puzzle is supposed to be.
God may have already given us the plan. But then He drops a piece into our lap that doesn’t seem to fit anywhere. What do we do then? Do we try to force that piece to fit where it doesn’t belong? Or do we put our trust in the Lord and follow Him step by step as He hands us one piece at a time to the puzzle of our life?
A favorite scripture of mine that always encourages me to follow God’s plan is First Corinthians 2:9 (NLT)—“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared” for His children.
Every time I read that verse, I get excited in my spirit! God has many wonderful plans for our lives because He loves us, and we are His precious children. But sometimes we get the pieces of the puzzle so mixed up that we can’t seem to follow His will!
If we take the puzzle pieces God hands to us and obey His instructions today, He will take care of tomorrow.
No Shortcuts to the Promised Land
If you think you have trouble following God’s plan, imagine what it must have been like for Abraham when God first dealt with him about going to the Promised Land. When Abraham was 75 years old, God told him to leave his country, the land of his fathers, without telling him where he was supposed to go! The Lord simply said, “Go to a place I will show you” (Gen. 12:1).
Most of us probably would have replied, “But Lord—aren’t You going to give me a clue about where we are going?” We would have wanted God to hand us a few more pieces to the puzzle. But Abraham didn’t question the Lord. He loaded up his belongings, took his wife and family, and started on a journey to follow God’s plan.
When Abraham reached the land of Canaan, almost immediately a famine struck. If that had been most of us, we would have said, “Now, wait a minute, Lord! This is supposed to be the Promised Land. What’s happening here?”
You may think you have reached your promised land, but all of a sudden famine hits. I encourage you to hold on. The last chapter in the book of your life hasn’t been written yet!
A Giant Step of Faith
I can relate to how Abraham must have felt when God spoke to Him about leaving the place where he had lived his entire life and going to a strange land. My husband and I experienced something similar in the early years of our marriage.
I always knew God had a plan for my life. I grew up in a pastor’s home and longed to be a pastor’s wife. But it turned out that being a pastor’s wife wasn’t the first thing God called me to do. It would be another 20 years before my husband and I began pastoring Rhema Bible Church.
In the meantime, I continued to follow God’s plan, one step at a time. When the Lord handed me a new piece to the puzzle, I tried to do what He asked with all my heart.
But one day He gave me a really hard puzzle piece. It was something I did not want to do at all. The Lord asked me to do what He had asked Abraham to do—leave my own country, my own people, and go to a strange land. It was a giant step of faith for me, and I struggled with the Lord about it.
I began to seek the Lord, asking Him to show me whether this was His plan for our lives. As I prayed, talked to God, and studied His Word, He made it clear that this was His plan. This was the next piece of the puzzle, even though it looked like it didn’t fit anywhere in what I thought was God’s plan.
Our friends thought we were crazy when Ken left a position as associate pastor and we moved to Tulsa to do God-knows-what. Yes, we were crazy—crazy enough to obey the Lord.
But if we had not been willing to take that giant step of faith, even when it looked like it was wrong for us, we wouldn’t be where we are today. We followed God’s plan to the very best of our abilities, and He has blessed us as He promised in First Corinthians 2:9—beyond our wildest dreams and imaginations!
God’s Amazing Plan
God has always had a plan for your life. He had a purpose in mind when He created you. He looked down from Heaven and said, “There’s no one on earth exactly like the person I’m about to create.” And then He added, “I have a special mission for them to accomplish.”
The success of that mission depends on how we follow God’s plan for us. But so many times, we give up on God’s will and His promise right before it comes to pass. Or we try to make things happen in our strength.
If we take the puzzle pieces God hands us and obey His instructions today, He will take care of tomorrow. And He will fulfill every word He has spoken to our hearts! Eventually, all the pieces of the puzzle will fall into place, and we will see the beautiful picture of God’s amazing plan.
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