“There are many plans in a man’s heart, nevertheless the Lord’s counsel-that will stand.” Proverbs 19:21
Why is it that if we are climbing Mt. Everest we will with all trust and abandon, cling to the wisdom of our guide? But when it comes to day-to-day matters... we tend to go it alone. Why is it that when we are in our own comfort zone, we shirk the heavenly wisdom of the Holy Spirit whispering in our hearts or even more blindly discount the emphatic direction we receive from our sovereign God?
The presence of God eclipses all problems, wants, perceived needs, even life-and-death-crises into obscurity. When we invoke God’s presence, wisdom, counsel and companionship, He guides us on the path for His will for us and all of the static fades into the background. Instead, we have been acculturated in our society to seek “expert advice” in almost everything we do... Before streaming tv, most folks simply went about their day, washing clothes, cooking meals and working with the whispered wisdom of the Holy Spirit in their hearts or the sage advice of an elder. Today we defer almost every action we take to what some “expert” has to say on the matter. Have we ever stopped to think most of those we solicit advice from are driven by some ulterior motive beyond what our omniscient God knows our lives and souls were designed for?
It seems that in our modern, too-much-is-nowhere-near-enough way, we approach life looking through the wrong end of the telescope. In our desire to address every thought, every item on our to-do list and every activity in our child’s over-packed schedule, we render a blurry counterfeit of most everything we hope to accomplish. In our race to do it all with our I-don’t-want-to-leave-anything-out mentalities, we tend to lose sight of our original intentions for many of the things we pursue. Think about it... we want to be productive so we unconsciously multi-task while never attaining the deep satisfaction of achievement. We want to be present for our children, providing them with rich and nurturing experiences, so distracted and stressed, we shuffle them from one thing to another while trying to fit errands in between.
We think, speak and act so much more than we dwell, and when we do, all of the outcomes we so hastily set out to achieve reap not the fullness of our intentions but collateral distress, conflict, anxiety and resentment. Jesus was very very clear in His sermon on the mount in Matthew 6:33 about how we should approach our daily life when He spoke, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” He was speaking directly to the Gentiles regarding worry for the provision of their needs in their daily lives. Imagine, humanity is so concerned about meeting their daily needs, that Jesus, himself felt it necessary to address it in His sermon on the mount.
We all remember and too often forget the acronym for God: Good Orderly Direction. We may face the day with the best of intentions but it is all too easy to get tangled up in our complicated lives...How many times have you finished the day, stopping to finally pause and reflect, and thought, “Ooh, that didn’t really go exactly as planned, I lost my Jesus somewhere around 10am and it went south from there...” The more rigorous we are about setting our sights on God with present-centered intentional focus, the more we look to Him before we think, speak, or act in our day-to-day lives, and the more peaceful our lives become. Imagine if we deferred to our almighty expert in all things, how aligned with His will and our true purpose we would be. For it is only He who can truly “guide our feet in the way of peace.”