Grocery lists and God’s plan for our lives

Even though I don’t like to admit it, I prefer to be organized. I prefer to have a plan. Now, that doesn’t mean that I can’t be spontaneous. On the contrary, I am more spontaneous than I am organized. But at the same time I don’t think someone can be truly spontaneous until they have a plan and know what kind of time they have.

I have a routine I follow every morning. And I have to follow that routine or I forget things. And when I’m out of the routine, I always feel like I’m missing something. Like a grocery list at the store. I have to write down the things I need or I will buy things I don’t need and forget about the things I do. It didn’t used to be that way. When I was in college, I could remember everything I needed without a list.

Planning takes a lot of work, though, because you have to think of everything. Even planning a trip to the grocery store takes some foresight because you have to think about the things you need for the whole week or the whole month or however long you shop for. How many meals will you eat at home? How many people will you be feeding? What do you already have that you don’t need to buy? Do you clip coupons? Do you only go to one store or do you go to three to get the best deals you can?

Once you can figure all those questions out and make your list, when you go the store and have a question, you know what the plan is. You know how many meals you need to make out of that one super-expensive roast, which is why you’re buying it instead of its cheaper equivalent. And even though it would be really great to buy a tub of name brand ice cream, it’s really cheaper to buy the off brand and it does just as well.

Having a plan is something of a comfort because you will have an answer when questions pop up. Just refer to the plan. And I don’t care how spontaneous of a person you are, that holds true for everyone. When you have questions, you want answers that tell you the plan (whatever that plan is) is still in motion.

Today’s verse is Jeremiah 29:11.

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.

This verse has been cropping up all over the place recently. I’m not going to go into the history and the background of this verse. You can do that in a blog post I did back in February. Today I just wanted to think about what it means that God has plans for us.

If we think our plans are good, imagine how much better God’s plans are! It goes without saying that they would be good, designed to give us hope.

And for me, that’s encouraging. Because I have a lot of questions right now. I have questions about all sorts of things, ranging from fairly insignificant to life changing in their scope. And they are questions that no one can answer other than God because only He knows what’s going to happen.

But when I have questions about where God is leading me, all I have to do is refer to His plan. Of course, I don’t know all of His plan, but the Bible tells me everything I need to know.

God created the world.
God created us.
We rejected God.
We were going to die and be separated from Him eternally.
God saved us even though we didn’t deserve to be saved.
He is coming back to take us home someday.
And until that day comes, He walks with us through trials and troubles, teaching us how to trust Him.

That’s the plan. The plan right now is wait. The answer is simply because God isn’t ready to take us home yet. There are too many people who don’t know the truth and who have never been given an opportunity to change their minds.

So when I have questions about why I’m going through the things I’m going through, all I have to do is to remember that God has a plan for me and for my life. And whatever its eventual outcome, it’s a good plan. And I just have to remember that God’s plan for right now is still in motion. Nothing is chaos when it comes to God.

And much like knowing that I just need one bag of celery from the store because I’m not having any company this week, I know that today God’s plan for me is to go to work, complete my responsibilities to the best of my ability, and love people with all my heart while I’m waiting for Him to come back for us.

That’s the plan. Now it’s up to me to follow it.

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