Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Thoughts of Peace, Plans of Progress

UV 2080/10000 Thoughts of Peace, Plans of Progress
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
Jeremiah 29 v 11

The Lord God has thoughts of peace that translate into specific plans to help us. The enemy of our collective souls in contrast has thoughts of strife that translate into plans to harm us. When we enter into a covenant relationship by faith in Jesus with the Lord God, He not only takes responsibility for the former to happen but to protect us from the latter, the plans of the enemy to steal our peace, rob our joy, kill our spirits, destroy our testimony and our future. The Lord is the author of goodness in our lives while the enemy is the antithesis- the author of all evil and deception in our lives. The Lord pits His strength on our side. Jesus fought the ultimate battle for the human soul on the cross and wrested ultimate and absolute victory for each of us.

As the Psalmist David wrote in wonderment and humility, “ Why should the Lord even think of us.” Yet, the Lord’s plans for each of us are multiple and dynamic. His thoughts towards us are innumerable, infinite and beyond our understanding. He desires our well being, our temporal as well as eternal well being. Our own thoughts, actions, choices often interfere with His plans, thoughts and intentions for us. He knows or consciously orchestrates things and circumstances in our favour. His thoughts and ways are much higher than ours, much higher than our collective and individual knowledge as well as imagination. He knows our end, the end of everything in our lives from the beginning and has spoken or revealed it often ahead of time. Our response ought to be to have a lively hope or a real time hope and to wait for the Lord’s thoughts, intentions and plans to translate into reality. Our response is to surrender our thoughts and plans to Him, knowing His plans will prevail and His plans are for our good. He seeks not just a passive acquiescence in His plans but a joyful trust and acceptance.

We need to daily and frequently seek the counsel of the Lord. Unlike the enemy, He will not lead us up a garden path or a path of red herrings. Our trust in Him is demonstrated when we actively do His bidding whatever be the cost. The emphasis in God’s plans is on finishing well. My father –in-law once wisely counselled me that how we end our lives determines whether we are a success or not. This uni-verse promises us that we will have an expected end. The “expected end” is always much better and higher than our own expectations. Scripture reveals from beginning to end the thoughts, plans and expectations of the Lord for each of us. The task cut out for us is to conform to these thoughts, plans and promises. Hope is a by-product of faith that can be used in every situation of life. Our faith in this uni-verse inspires great hope in us. The cracks or weaknesses in our understanding and faith in the Lord inspires needless fears and doubts about our lives, about our health, about our future and about our end.

Prateep V Philip

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