What if God’s plan for your life is not the best plan for your life?
For most of you reading this, that is an absolutely ludicrous question. But, let me ask you to suspend your theological questions for a moment and just ponder whether there is any way it is possible that God’s plan for your life may not be the best plan.
I’m pretty sure at this point I’ve offended 50% of you, 25% of you have already unsubscribed from CrossEyedLife.com and the remaining 25% are praying for my soul. Let me ask you to just hang on, I promise I’ll make a point worth making.
For us to seriously ponder the question of whether or not it’s possible for God’s plan for our life to NOT be the best plan for our life, we must define a term or two.
When I use the word “best” we almost universally, as individual as we are, define it in the exact same way:
- the best financial plan for me is to spend less and get more
- the best time plan for me is to do less and play more
- the best physical plan for me is to be healthier and suffer less
- the best emotional plan for me is to be happy and less… everything else
I think you see the pattern here; we could go on and on defining what’s best for us in every arena of life based on a single standard: what will benefit me the most?
That’s how we naturally and internally define “best.” The best answer, the best plan and the best outcome are always defined by how much better things will be for me as an individual.
Here’s a funny twist though, if Jesus is our Lord and Master that would make us His servant and slave. Would that not give Him the right to choose for us what is best? What if His plan for our life was not a plan that always made us more money, gave us more time, healed us of our wounds, or even made us happier?
I’m not even speaking in those hyper spiritual tones where God can choose better for us because we don’t know what we really want, and His plan will bless us more than we were even asking. But, as our Lord and Master, what if He chooses to use us for His own or someone else’s benefit?
What if it costs us to benefit Him or someone else?
What if He calls us to do no less than He has done, to suffer unjustly for the sake of others?
What if He calls us to lay down our rights, privileges and rewards because in doing so others will be blessed in the way they could not, without our sacrifice?
There are many of us who call Jesus Lord and Savior, but I think far too often we emphasize Savior and neglect Lord. Far too often we want Him to rescue us, bless us and protect us while we forget that if He never did another thing for us we have been rescued, blessed and protected more than we ever deserved.
If He truly is our Lord and Master, then He is perfectly right, just and fair in asking us to give up what is ours for the sake of others. That they might come to find the same forgiveness, wholeness and hope that already resides in us.
I honestly believe that God’s plan for our life is always the best plan for our life. And, I truly believe that the vast majority of the time God is wanting to lavish on us good gifts, blessings and mercies.
But, I also think we operate under a bad definition of what is best. Best for a believer is whatever is best for our Master, even if it means be used up, broken, or sacrificed.
Sometimes what’s best for us is having less, suffering more and giving all to please the One who has already given all for us. And in doing so, there may be some who find what we have found… Jesus deserves to be our Lord, Master and Savior.
I see this theme throughout the entirety of Scripture, but let me point out one instance to you from Romans chapter 14. There was a debate in the church as to whether all food was clean or unclean to eat. Some were clinging to the old Jewish laws of the Old Testament, but Paul said Jesus had made all things clean.
Still, he told those who had been freed in Christ (the strong) not to make those who are less mature (the weak) stumble and suffer by eating whatever they wanted as they had the right to do. Instead, he told them to give up this privilege in order to preserve the relationships and help those who are less advanced not stumble and fall.
He told Godly people to give up their rights, for the sake of others. The following verses are from that chapter, and the highlights are mine:
13 Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother. 14 I know and am persuaded in the Lord Jesus that nothing is unclean in itself, but it is unclean for anyone who thinks it unclean. 15 For if your brother is grieved by what you eat, you are no longer walking in love. By what you eat, do not destroy the one for whom Christ died. 16 So do not let what you regard as good be spoken of as evil. 17 For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. 18 Whoever thus serves Christ is acceptable to God and approved by men. 19 So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding.
20 Do not, for the sake of food, destroy the work of God. Everything is indeed clean, but it is wrong for anyone to make another stumble by what he eats. 21 It is good not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything that causes your brother to stumble. 22 The faith that you have, keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who has no reason to pass judgment on himself for what he approves. 23 But whoever has doubts is condemned if he eats, because the eating is not from faith. For whatever does not proceed from faith is sin.
If you boil it down to this, it’s simple: Your testimony is more important than your rights. And, your faithfulness is more important than your privileges. He is Lord.