Jeremiah 16:16-18:23, 1Theselonoans 4:1-5:3, Psalms 81:1-16, Proverbs 25:6-7
Today is the 11th day of October. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I am Brian. What a pleasure it is to be here with you today, just like every day because we come together around this global campfire and we can slow the world down and give ourselves permission to step away from all the chaos. We’re doing it for a reason. We’re doing it because our souls are craving God’s word in our lives. This is the rhythm of our lives. And he never ceases to speak to us through his word. So, everything that’s been going on, all the chaos, that’s still there. We can return to it. But we can return to it after stepping away for a minute and allowing God to give us some context through his word. So, we’re reading from the Amplified Bible this week. And in our Old Testament reading, we’ll go back into the book of Jeremiah, which we’ve been working our way through for the last, I guess, week, right? About a week. These days and weeks, they fly by. Nevertheless, today Jeremiah 16:16-18:23 today.
Okay. God has a plan, right? Have you ever heard that said before? Have you ever said that before? Usually, you hear, God has a plan as a means of encouragement when we’re facing unexpected hardship. But does God have a plan like that though? And if he does, is it a mysterious plan that we can’t figure out? When we think about God’s plan, we’re usually thinking about it because we don’t like where we are or we’re watching something awful unfold in the world and we will just shake our heads and tell ourselves that God has a plan. We don’t understand it now, but all will be revealed eventually. And, honestly, it’s easier this way. It’s easier to press into the idea that God has a plan because then it leaves us with an excuse. And if the sorrows that we’re facing in our own lives or just as humanity can all be attributed to God and his plan, then we have no culpability in anything, right? So, this is like disassociation. We can look at the mess that we’ve made of things or we can look at global events and think this isn’t my fault. God has a plan, which essentially means that God’s to blame for everything. This is not a new concept. This is a very ancient concept, and in our reading from Jeremiah, God spoke on his own behalf about this issue. So, quoting God from the book of Jeremiah, at one moment I might suddenly speak concerning a nation or kingdom that I will uproot and break down and destroy. If that nation against which I have spoken turns from its evil, I will relent and reverse my decision concerning the devastation that I intended to do. Or at another time I might suddenly speak about a nation or kingdom that I will build up or establish. And if they do evil in my sight by not obeying my voice, then I will reverse my decision concerning the good with which I had promised to bless them. Okay, so yes, for sure, God has a plan and it’s perfect. It’s a perfect plan to restore humanity. But, according to God’s word spoken through Jeremiah, human beings have a role to play in that plan. I mean, after all, it’s a plan for humanity, which means that our choices matter, right? Individually, our choices matter. As the whole of humanity, our choices matter. And according to Jeremiah, God is willing to change his plans accordingly and reverse his decisions accordingly. Let’s consider this, the concept that we would all find familiar. Sowing and reaping. If we will reap what we sow, right, then we can hardly chalk up a life full of weeds to God’s plan. We can’t plant selfishness or envy or immorality and expect that it’s going to yield the fruit of the Spirit. God has a plan, and we’re invited to collaborate with him in bringing that plan into its full and redemptive completion. And this happens in our personal lives as individual people and it happens as the whole of the Body of Christ in this world. If there’s anything that we’ve learned if the Scriptures so far this year, it’s that God desires and expects to collaborate with us in relationship. God’s plan is not our excuse for being absent in our own lives. His plan is that we might fall in love with him as he has fallen in love with us and that we might collaborate with him in bringing his kingdom and in the restoration of all things, which is a pretty good plan. So, next time something’s going sideways in our lives or that something awful is happening in the world and we’re shaking our heads and saying God has a plan, we have to say, yes, he has a plan, and how is it that I have stepped out of that plan as opposed to saying, well I have made a mess of things but it’s not my fault because God has a plan. We’re invited to collaborate with God in relationship in his plan for our personal, individual lives, for our families and for this world. May we consider how we can intentionally be involved in that plan today.
So, Holy Spirit, we invite You into that. We are all certainly guilty of being confused about circumstances and things that come our way and Your plan and how we all fit into that when we now realize that You have a plan. And You have always been willing to make modifications, just as You spoke in the book of Jeremiah today based on our response to Your plan. Come Holy Spirit. Align us with Your will and Your ways that we may walk with You perfectly, upright, as sons and daughters who are in love with their father and deeply want to participate in restoration and wholeness. Come Holy Spirit, we pray. In Jesus name we ask. Amen.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.