It is easy in life to find ourselves in a place where we start thinking I wish I could have a “do over”. I wish I could go back in time and do some things different. Maybe you have experienced that in marriage where in a split second it goes from casual to chaos and you are thinking, “How did this happen?” How did we just blow up at each other like that? Can we just start over?
It is in the midst of those chaotic moments remember that God has a plan…
11 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.
For each one of us, God has a plan. For some that will be comforting and for others, it will be annoying because it smacks of a Hallmark card that carries very little value. However, for a moment, just imagine there is a God, he is loving, and he has a plan.
Scripture tells us that He has determined the exact times and places for every man and woman. He knows, knew, and planned for you to live in Austin, planned for you to read this blog, he has a plan. Nothing escapes his notice. And maybe some of us are experiencing a level of pain that seems unbearable and the scripture tells us that he knows. That he himself has experienced pain in every way, that he is with us, and that he will never leave us. He knows.
Although verse 11 is encouraging, it could seem confusing when it says that he has plans to prosper us, not to harm us, but to give hope and a future. It would be easy to walk away from this passage and conclude God’s sole purpose is to be our personal lucky charm, however, we need to remember the context of the passage.
When we see the word “prosper” in the original language it means “shalom” which is often understood as “peace” and embodies the sum of God’s blessing so when Jeremiah tells us the Lord has plans for them, plans to prosper them (He is telling them that peace is coming).
It was 500 years later, after this verse, that God enters into human history, his name is Jesus, and comes to restore peace into humanity by willingly laying down his life on the cross to take our guilt and shame upon himself. God has a plan and as difficult as it is he is asking us to trust him, what if we trusted his plan, trusted the one who created us and created everything and were able to draw close to him?