PLANNING FOR TOMORROW WITHOUT GOD IN THE MIX IS PLANNING FOR A DISASTER (JAMES 4:13-17 MSG)
The grave yards are filled with many great and not so great people who had dreamed of a better tomorrow, but didn’t have the time to turn those dreams into reality because they were always putting off what they could have done today for tomorrow. They were always boasting in themselves, and the main ingredient that could help them to bring their dreams into the manifestation of reality was always, left out of their thinking and planning. On the other hand, we find people, especially business people making great plans to move their businesses to other countries and their only concern is how much profit they can make for their companies. Now please do not miss understand me on this point. I am also a businessperson and I love to make plans for another day and earn a profit for my company and the people who work there. Because we understand how to do things God’s way and know that by following God, planning is not evil—in fact, businesspeople are wise to plan ahead. The problem that we are addressing here is how God is not included in those plans.
Therefore, in today’s lesson, we are going to discuss with you, three essential facts that makes for good planning. (1). God is in control of all things. (2). our lives are a daily gift from God. (3). All our going and doing must be, carried out, with the first two points in mind.
Now let us begin this study by listen to God telling us that our lives are nothing more than a, “Wisp of Fog.” Think about that for a moment before you start talking about and planning for tomorrow. Then listen to the word as it speaks truth to power, “And now I have a word for you who brashly announce, “Today—at the latest, tomorrow—we’re off to such and such a city for the year. We’re going to start a business and make a lot of money.” You do not know the first thing about tomorrow. You are nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing. Instead, make it a habit to say, “If the Master wills it and we’re still alive, we’ll do this or that.” (James 4:14-15 MSG).
God wants us to understand that whatever we do, whatever plans we make, we must always make them with Him in mind. We cannot do anything on our own. We are God’s perfect creation, created in His image and likeness, to carry out His plans while we are here on this earth. Try as we may to separate God out of the equation, we will find it difficult to make it all work in the end.
God gave you this day, but never promised you tomorrow. What God wants each one of us to do is to take one day at a time. Use our energies on the task he has given us this day. Be thankful that we have the opportunity to be right where we are today. Plan for tomorrow, but the things that God has given to you today is for you today.
The merchants in this story were planning with arrogance, thinking they can go wherever they like and stay for as long as they wanted to stay. Their way of planning, doing business, and using money may be honest, but it is no different from the planning of any pagan businessperson. These Christian business people ought to have known better.
I can truly say that there is a problem with these well-laid plans; no one will know what will happen tomorrow, to say nothing of a year in the future. In Proverbs 27:1, the Bible says this, “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth. These merchants were planning as if their future was guaranteed. We are not suggesting that they should not have been making plans, but what we are suggesting is; because of possible disaster, but to be realistic about the future, as they trust God to guide them.
Now please allow me to share one final story with you to illustrate my point. This story is told by Luke as a young rich farmer after God had blessed him with an abundant crop, he begin to believe it was all about him and forgot about what God had done for him. Now listen to the words of Jesus, “Speaking to the people, he went on, “Take care! Protect yourself against the least bit of greed. Life is not defined by what you have, even when you have a lot.”
Then he told them this story: “The farm of a certain rich man produced a terrific crop. He talked to himself: ‘What can I do? My barn isn’t big enough for this harvest.’ Then he said, ‘Here’s what I’ll do: I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll gather in all my grain and goods, and I’ll say to myself, Self, you’ve done well! You’ve got it made and can now retire. Take it easy and have the time of your life!’
Just then God showed up and said, ‘Fool! Tonight you die. And your barn full of goods—who gets it?’
That’s what happens when you fill your barn with Self and not with God.” (Luke 12:15-21 MSG)
Because the future is uncertain, it is even more important that we completely depend on God. Our lives are uncertain, like the morning fog that covers the countryside in the morning and then is burned away by the sun. Life is short no matter how long we live. We should not be deceived into thinking we have plenty of time left to live for Christ, to enjoy our loved ones, or to do what we know we should. Today is the day to live for God! Then, no matter when our lives end, we will have fulfilled God’s plans for us.
We as Believers cannot live independently of God; therefore, our plans cannot ignore him. We must make sure those plans include the clause, if the Lord wants us to. We are to plan, but we are to recognize God’s higher will and divine sovereignty. This means far more than simply saying, “If God wills,” whenever we speak about future plans, for that to, can become meaningless. It means planning with God as we make our plans. Our plans should be evaluated by God’s advice. Such planning pleases God.
Now here is God’s final word to you, “As it is, you are full of your grandiose selves. All such vaunting self-importance is evil. In fact, if you know the right thing to do and do not do it, that, for you, is evil.” James 4:16-17 MSG. If God has directed you to do a kind act, to render a service to others, or to restore a relationship—do it. You will experience a renewed and refreshed vitality to your Christian faith.
Now let me close with this final thought for each one of you who have taken the time to read this entire lesson and the many lessons we teach here daily, “Think globally, and work locally. Looking beyond ourselves in the real and on line world, to reach out to others who might be in need, for we all are truly our Brothers Keeper, salvation is FREE for the asking. Take a moment wherever you may be, and ask the Lord to come into your heart. Ask Him to forgive you of your sins, and if you have spoken these few simple words in truth, you are saved, and now have eternal life.
May God continue to bless each one of you? Today I minister to you from a position of peace, power, purpose and prosperity in Jesus name. I remain Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.
MY MAXAMIZED PRAYER FOR MOVING SELF OUT OF OUR EQUATIONS
Father, in the name of Jesus we beseech you to help us move self out of the way, and in all we do, put you first in all things. Guide our minds to a higher level of thinking, that we may bring out the good that you have already granted us in our daily lives, that we may use it to help our fellowman, in Jesus name, Amen.