Lysa TerKeurst said that she uses what she calls the “three filters of truths” to process her life events:
1. God is good.
2. God is good to me.
3. God is good at being God.
I like her perspective on channeling things through these three filters, especially when things don’t go as I plan. And, while I don’t know about you, I can for sure say that often in my life, things don’t go the way I thought or planned.
I spend a lot of time thinking about and pondering things, and I wonder if others do the same. I have these great ideas of how something is going to be accomplished, I plan it all out, all the details are there, and if it’s a grandiose plan then it’s likely to be recorded on the computer rather in all in my mind. I know, I just know, that it’s going to be perfect. Things will go off without a hitch, and I will have immense satisfaction in the smash success of the plan.
The day comes, I am ready to go! Things are started and something goes wrong. My grandiose plans start to fall apart. What? How could this thing, this thing that I wanted so very badly to happen, how could they not come out the way I thought that they would? People don’t do what I thought they would do. They don’t act in the prescribed manner that is required. How could my plan fail?
My first marriage – I was so sure that I was going to live happily ever after. Failed.
My parenting – I was so sure that my child would be a perfectly well-behaved, straight A student. Failed.
You get the idea. We set up these expectations in our minds and often we don’t take them or our plan to the Lord for His approval. We get this idea and we run with it. We may actually be in the middle of something that the Lord is orchestrating, and we are so very sure that God will bring things about in a manner that fits right into our plan.
Jesus’ disciples didn’t really grasp God’s plan, and they had Jesus right there with them. Jesus told them what was going to happen, but they didn’t understand. They thought the the Messiah was going to establish an earthly kingdom. But, how could He establish His kingdom by being crucified? No, they abandoned Him at the time of trouble and didn’t really understand that the crucifixion was God’s plan – a greater plan than they could ever imagine.
It happens to all of us. And, it happens because we have limited knowledge, we have limited sight. God knows all, God sees all. God has a plan, and His plans are always so much more infinitely better than we could ever imagine. We have to step back and get out of His way.
Look back at wilderness experiences that we’ve had in our lives. It is during those times when my plans didn’t go the way I expected, that I see the greatest growth in my relationship with God. I take my hands off, I get out of the way, and God works out everything. Hindsight is 20/20 and it’s when I look back I can see what God was doing. It was that way for the disciples also.
When things don’t go the way that I planned, and I get myself boxed in a corner, I can’t see the way out, that’s when I try to remember that I’m not the one in control. God is in control. I need to say “God, I don’t know how you are going to work this out, I can’t see the positive outcome in this situation, but I know and I trust that you are going to do something wonderful. And, I can’t wait to see just how you work this out for your glory!”
Beth Moore said in Believing God:
1. God is who He says He is.
2. God can do what He says He can do.
3. I am who God says I am.
4. I can do all things through Christ
5. God’s Word is alive & active in me.
I’m believing God!
God is good.
God is good to me.
God is good at being God.
Yes, Lysa is right. And so is Beth. Wise words from both, and words that guide me well.
Do you have wise words that you’ve received from others, and guide you?
Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand. (Proverbs 19:21, ESV)