Seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you as well. So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Every day has enough trouble of its own
Planning is an inescapable part of life. For those possessing a dominant “Type A” personality, this truth results in a great deal of fulfillment as calendars are organized to maximize efficiency and productivity. Absent such rigorous structure, some can feel as though they’re adrift and helpless. For others, especially “Type B” folks, the prospect of engaging in any intense planning produces an admixture of stress and frustration. They find far more satisfaction in spontaneity, and they appreciate the freedom to follow their intuition. Yet regardless of your preference Jesus calls us to embark on a different kind of planning—one that refuses to fit either the “Type A” or the “Type B” mold.
What Jesus proposes can be described as faith-driven planning. Faith-driven planning strives to make plans based on trust in God’s sovereign provision, as opposed to letting worries dictate decisions. To the meticulous planner type, Jesus says, “Let go of your frenzied efforts to control your life. Seek first the Kingdom of God, and trust me to provide.” And to the figure-it-out-as-you-go adventurer, Jesus says, “I have a path for you to follow, and the directions start with seeking first the Kingdom of God. No, you don’t need to have all the details worked out, but the life of discipleship entails more than aimless wandering. Take decisive action, and trust me to lead.” Which of these words do you need to hear right now?
However you answer, everyone has room to implement more faith-driven planning in his or her life. Naturally, we all have an agenda we’ve envisioned for ourselves, but the test of our discipleship is the extent to which we’re willing to put aside our own agendas—however right they may seem in our own eyes—for the sake of Christ’s agenda. “Listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, conduct business and make money.’ Why, you don’t even know what will happen tomorrow! What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a short while and then disappears. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it’s the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that’” (James 4:13-15).
Tabernacle also finds itself in a season of planning. We’re discerning ministry priorities for 2017 and beyond, and we’re trying to determine the best ways to “seek first the Kingdom of God.” Plans must be made, and my prayer is that we would all be willing to graciously and faithfully submit our desires to Christ’s Lordship. I hope you’ll be in prayer with me.