Living on Purpose: Do we really want to know God’s plan?

Published 5:30 pm Wednesday, March 13, 2024

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Those of us who have been in the Christian faith for a while joyfully embrace Romans chapter eight as it is filled with encouraging promises. God has been so good to us and we know it’s because of His endless love that we can enjoy an abundant life filled with blessings. Of course, we have our share of frustrations and disappointments, but for the most part, the Lord provides for our basic needs and to be honest, He has also given us a lot of luxuries. When things are going well, let’s not become more focused on the gifts than the giver.

We realize the world judges success with how much money and talent a person has and all the things they accumulate throughout their lifetime, but for the followers of Christ, our greatest accomplishment will be how close we are to God and our obedience to Him. By the way, we can be as close to Him as we want, and this brings up a critical question as to how important this is to us.

Life has its seasons and sometimes things can get rough, especially the unexpected crisis. It’s not being negative to say there will be trials that will try to knock us off our feet, but is there a way we can at least somewhat be prepared to handle adversity when it comes? I believe the answer is yes. It’s not easy, but when we develop a friendship with God and understand who He is, trusting Him can be our first response. When problems arise, the only thing in our power is our attitude toward it; we can either ask God which choices to make that will help us do His will and be victorious, or we can resent it and in bitterness surrender to defeat. It’s not what happens, it’s how we react.

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My friend Jonah Mitchell in his book, “The Rocks Go With The Farm” explains that problems and difficulties are inevitable and our ideas about how we want to see our problems solved are not always the way God is planning. It’s not about how many rocks we hit with our plow, it’s how determined we are to not allow obstacles to define who we are and what God wants to do within us. Most of the time we just want a quick fix, but our Father desires that we become spiritually mature and wise in our quest to be more like Him. I recommend this book for those who are serious about learning self-discipline, renewing the mind, and personal transformation.

In hard times, we are tempted to deny the situation, which we all know is like putting a band-aid on a broken arm. Some search for peace on their own as they give up on faith and live in misery. My friend, the Bible is true and it’s all about God’s love. Luke chapter one and verse 37 declares, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” I realize some will say, “You do not comprehend the severity of my problem” and that might be true, but God understanding everything and being concerned about everyone is absolute truth!

Have you asked Jesus to be your Master and Lord? Do you believe that He died so that you could live? He loves you and has a perfect plan for your life! Instead of seeing God as a cosmic Genie, bow before Him in reverential fear and worship Him as the Almighty Creator of heaven and earth. We are not molding God into our image, it’s the other way around.

Depression and feeling sorry for ourselves are real emotions and unfortunately, a lot of people are smiling on the outside but are crying on the inside. The good news is that we can be set free from the snare traps of deception and instead of being sad or angry because God is not “fixing it” let’s ask Him to let us see ourselves the way He sees us. Have you considered the answer might be that we are the one that needs to be changed? Honestly examining the big picture of our situation and analyzing every detail will allow us to trace the cause of our discouragement and hopefully, we can discover a deeper understanding of our situation. When we comprehend how our personal trigger mechanisms and response buttons operate, this is a huge step toward discerning how our thoughts dictate our confidence and contentment.

Dr. Billy Holland is a Christian minister, author, and community chaplain. Read more about the Christian life at