This is the full day of the Western Conservative Summit. It has been good to see people that we haven’t seen in a year and to hear some excellent speakers, communicate with passion and vision. There are five Republican Presidential candidates speaking during the conference and last night we heard Rafael Cruz, the father of Ted Cruz from Texas, who is a pastor and leader and dynamic communicator.
We are staying at the Convention Center Hyatt and have a room on the 23rd floor with a great view of the mountains and downtown.
A highlight of our day was attending a 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration for our friends Doug and Pat Powell. Doug and Pat have been friends for a number of years. I served as their pastor for a number of years. Doug served on our church board and Pat also served with me as an Associate Pastor. It was a great opportunity to reconnect with them and many friends from our pastoral ministry years.
BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY… “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
Today as I prepared to pray a prayer of blessing for my friends Doug and Pat Powell as they marked their 50th Wedding Anniversary, I shared some comments from this familiar verse in Jeremiah. I realized that I have often referred to this verse but never “broke it down” with some observations.
The first thing that should catch our attention is that “God has plans for us.” This speaks of promise, potential and destiny. It is one thing to have plans for yourself, but when you feel like there are others who have “plans for you” who want to encourage your success and future that is a different level. When it is the God of the Universe, you can have encouragement knowing what He plans, He accomplishes.
I often note that this verse, filled with encouragement words, is spoken to God’s people as they begin 70 years of captivity, away from their homeland. What we need to know, is that our past or our present, cannot circumvent God’s plan for our future.
God’s plan is for our good; to prosper and not to harm. Regardless of whether God’s plan involves times of testing and trial, we can be assured that the final outcome will be one that is a cause for rejoicing and is evident of God’s provision for our life.
God’s plan gives a positive outlook for the future. I am perplexed at times how even those who claim to be followers of Christ will have anxiety about the future. This may lead them to look to horoscopes or something worse in a search for reassurance. God is a God who has worked in the past, He is with us in the present, but it is His promise for our future that gives us hope and encouragement. When He is “on our side” and when we understand that “He is for us” we can be excited about His plan and purpose being fulfilled in our lives.
What God’s people discovered is that God’s plan are fulfilled when we learn to trust and submit to Him. For them it took 70 years to learn that lesson and that God is serious about our lives and how we live them. This makes me think of the saying, “we can do this the easy way or the hard way!”
I would rather have confidence in a God who will intervene and redirect my life, than to sit back and allow me to drive “off the cliff” of life. When life isn’t working, stop! and get in line with God’s plan for your life. It is a hope-filled-prosperous future.