I spent this morning reflecting on the 35 years of life that God has entrusted to me thus far and pondering what this next year might hold. I am dreaming God-sized dreams, praying for His purposes to unfold, and His will to be done in my 36th year of life. I stumbled across Psalm 146 and it inspired me to plan well for the year that lies ahead.
“I will praise the Lord all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.
Do not put your trust in princes,
in human beings, who cannot save.
When their spirit departs, they return to the ground;
on that very day their plans come to nothing.
Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord their God.
Psalm 146:2-5 NIV
My heart is to sing his praises with EVERY breath that I am entrusted with. And, let’s just be honest, sometimes those are merely words that we speak as opposed to action statements. “Singing praise to God as long as we live” means that our words will move from our mouths, to our hands and our feet, stretched out to a broken world that desperately needs HIs love. Often times we place our trust or our hope in other people, and our trust in God and our desire to “sing His praises” slowly seeps out like a tire with a slow leak, which ultimately ends up flat. We wait for the job, marriage, child, family, friendship, promotion or home that we always dreamt about. When we are looking to these type of things for fulfillment, our plans end up based on earning approval, chasing worldly success, or building ourselves a kingdom. And someday we will take our last breath; life is fleeting, fragile, here today and gone tomorrow. When our plans stem from a place of hope and trust in anything or anyone but Christ, they purely amount to NOTHING as soon as our life comes to an end.
I don’t know about you, but the thought of all of my “plans” coming to NOTHING, being purely meaningless, is super depressing. So, this year, I want my “plans” to be in line with “singing His praises” and stemming from a place of total trust in God, the One who saves. I want “plans” that stand through time, that matter longer than just for today. But, how do we do that? Because honestly speaking, right now, most of my plans feel so important. However, when I measure my plans with the thought of taking my last breath, I see that many of them will fade with my very fragile life. I am using Psalms 146 to inspire my “plans” this year.
He gives justice to the oppressed
and food to the hungry.
The Lord frees the prisoners.
The Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
The Lord lifts up those who are weighed down.
The Lord loves the godly.
The Lord protects the foreigners among us.
He cares for the orphans and widows,
but he frustrates the plans of the wicked
Psalm 146: 7-9 NLT
Our plans need to be based on His purposes. We should stand for justice for those who are being treated harshly, those who are oppressed. I long to feed the hungry; and sometimes “hunger” has nothing to do with a growling belly, but rather a starving soul. Let’s make “plans” to find ways to be a part of freeing prisoners; those who are locked in shame, sin, selfish pursuits, inviting them towards a life of freedom with Christ; a life of becoming the person that God created them to be! Let’s make “plans” to lift up those who are weighed down with guilt, rejection, weariness, depression, and despair. Let’s protect and invite the outsiders to become insiders in His kingdom! Oh, how I long to store up treasures in heaven; not mansions and diamonds, but the treasure of PEOPLE! We need to get out of our comfort zones, people are perishing while we are busy chasing personal fulfillment! Our plans need to be all about “singing His praises.” These are plans that stand the test of time. These are the plans that do not become meaningless when our spirits depart. These are the plans that carry on into eternity.
So, for my 36th year of life, I plan to chase the dream that God placed in my heart when He formed me in my mother’s womb; the dream that I would speak freedom to nations and that He would use my voice to spark revival in the hearts of His people. I want to be used as a catalyst for transformation. I want to be a voice of TRUE empowerment, helping people to claim their rights as children of God. I plan to take steps towards this dream by simply being faithful with what He puts in front of me, remaining thankful in all things, dying to self daily, and by continuing to say “yes” to Him, no matter the cost.
I pray that God will inspire you to adjust your plans!
PS. God Delights in YOU!