So here we are—the week before Memorial Day Weekend and I should be at the beach. No seriously. For the past few years, this has been when Jamie and I would take our summer vacation. Yes, I know it’s early, but it’s the only time we’ve been able to afford to go (because the rates are super cheap this time of year.) Usually we’d just be wrapping up Mantours, and we’d be pretty exhausted. A few days sitting in the sun watching the waves roll in are just what the doctor ordered. But this year is different. First, the last three Mantours were cancelled because of the virus. Then we couldn’t have our annual board meeting with all of our friends. Now we are missing our vacation. We don’t get to go to the beach. We don’t get to hang out with our friends and stay up late chatting. Jamie can’t jet ski and we don’t get to eat burgers and fries at our favorite spot. Instead, we’re “staying at home” under government order and probably won't get a vacation this year. Personally, I’m disappointed. I’m sure many of you can relate. So many things are different this year. So many things we planned for, prepared for, and invested in will not be happening. It’s like Someone took our yearly planner and deleted everything. And yet, as Christians who believe God controls our steps, we have to acknowledge that God let this happen. (Just let that sit in your heart for a minute.) If we truly believe that God prepares our steps, orders our days, and knows our future, then we have to believe that He is allowing our plans to be changed. (Btw, I am talking about more than just my vacation plans—we all know that this virus has affected all of our plans in unimaginable and life altering ways.) Still, the truth remains that nothing comes into the life of a believer that does not first go through the hand of God. For some reason, God has allowed all of our lives and plans to change. The question each of us needs to answer for ourselves is “Why?” We can only find that answer by spending time in prayer seeking our own individual answers. In prayer, we need to be asking God: What is your purpose for this time in my life? What do you want me to do in this season? We need to be asking God why He changed our plans and how He wants us to change our plans to fit into His agenda. Trust me when I say I am talking to myself as much as anyone. I know it isn’t easy when our plans change. I had a plan for 2020 and it is gone. Everything has changed, been rearranged, and looks nothing like I thought it would. I understand the disappointment, the grief, and even the anger that goes with these changes. But these feelings need to be temporary. We can’t live there. Instead, each of us as followers of Christ need to choose a point where we move on and start asking “OK God, now what? Where do we go from here?” What is Your plan? I surrender my ideas to Your ways, what’s next? Then we daily need to walk in Gods ways. As we do we can trust the promise of Jeremiah 29:11: "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." God still has a plan, He still has a purpose. Even though His plan may not be our plan—as the Bible says in the end, His plan is better.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9)
Today, I want to challenge you to change your focus. Stop fighting for your plan and begin seeking God's plan for your life. Stop wishing for what could have been or in your mind should have been and begin asking God for His reopening plan for your future. Trust me, He has one—He wants to share it with you.
Adessa Holden is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God specializing in Women's Ministry. Together with her brother, Jamie, they manage 4One Ministries and travel the East Coast speaking, holding conferences, and producing Men's and Women's resources that provide practical Biblical teaching for everyday life.
When asked about herself, she'll tell you "I'm a women's minister, a sister, and a daughter. I love to laugh and spend time with people. My favorite things are chocolate, the ocean, sandals and white capris, anything purple, summertime and riding in the car listening to music. It is my absolute honor and privilege to serve Jesus and women through this ministry.