Friday, August 6, 2010

That's the Plan...

Let’s talk about what makes a good plan.
Why good plans fail.
What characteristics formulate bad plans.
We are constantly making plans. Even if they are plans for the day. Grocery lists are plans!

My plan used to be for song nights was to NOT take requests cause there was a good chance I wouldn’t know it. But now I’ve got this little program that assigns the tones for me and I can learn the song… and most of the time the songs are on YouTube… now I take requests… if I don’t know them I’ll work it into my hectic social calendar and learn it for the next song service.
That’s one of my plans.

And when people ask me what my plans are for the kids for the summer I know what they are asking me… but really what my primary plan is for the kids to be closer to God at the end of the summer than right now. That’s the overall plan… but that’s a plan that we are all involved in.

The Legislators of our country put laws into motion formulating a future plan for our country. Our state. Our county. Plans for the world that our children will inherit from us.

When we develop a plan, we need an understanding of the topic we are developing a plan for. Is it easy to make up a grocery list at work? No. You’re not at home to see what you need.

The mother of the sons of Zebeedee had a plan to secure a position for her two sons, james and john. But she lacked the knowledge to formulate a good plan. In actuality she wasn’t thinking in spiritual terms but rather in physical… She wanted her sons close to Jesus… that would secure their position. Physical location was what she desired for them. IN Matthew 20:20-23 we have the story of how her request was met. Of how her plan turned out. Read.

When they answered WE CAN to the question of can you drink the cup that I am going to drink? James probably had no idea that he was in fact going to. It is recorded in Acts 12 that Herod had him put to death with the sword.

God had a plan to test Abraham. In Genesis 22:9 we find the story of God’s request that Abraham offer Isaac as a burnt offering. And of course Abraham did as the Lord requested, just short of slaying his son with a knife before the angel of the Lord stopped him. This was God’s plan to see if Abraham would really go so far, in attempting to please Him, even in killing his only son. Would he go that far? God was pleased with the answer.
But we can also see that there is another aspect to God’s plan. God is all-knowing. We hold this truth among the great truths… but if you can imagine what that’s like, think about it for a moment.

What if I was to tell you who was going to win the championship in one sport or another next year? What if I was to tell you what your child was going to grow up to be? When you were going to die. How you were going to die. Would it affect the plans we make??

Ponder that for a moment and we’ll come back to the first two considerations.
But the matter concerning death… many people make plans for their own deaths. They don’t want to be a burden to their family when they’re gone. These are age-specific plans generally… usually middle age people are just planning to get older. What will life be like when I’m older??? Those sorts of things. But eventually there will be plans laid out for what is to occur after the aging person is gone. This is a very responsible thing to do.
When you go to the doctor, and you fill out all that information… that’s so they can formulate a plan for their treatment of you. And again they need INFORMATION to do this.
Plans for when we die.

Jesus’s death.

The plan of salvation was wholly dependent upon how Jesus met his death.

Why do plans fail? WE have already touched on a few reason why plans fail. We lack the knowledge to put a solid plan together. If a plan involved more than one person, it may lack cooperation for one reason or another. Perhaps there is not a consensus among those involved that it is a good plan. That may affect people’s respective actions in the plan and it may fail due to lack of enthusiasm.

We make plans for the church at the men’s business meetings. If you have never been to one, you are unaware of how carefully, the decisions that are made are planned out. And it is not just the big things that will get attention. I mean the smallest things… the smallest aspects of service or concerning an activity or supplies for the church. The men that meet for the business meetings are taking it seriously. That’s the beginning of plans… And the more men we have the greater the knowledge base we can have. So do you see how, by that rationale---and I think It is valid--- that the more men we have, the better the plans we will make?

We all have individual plans.

We have plans for our families.

In satan's plan of condemnation, his infinite jealousy and perfect deceit meld into a justification for sinful man.
It leaves no one out.
It is ready when we are.
It fits our time. Our lifestyle. Our calendar. As long as we allow it to come between us and God.
It will shackle us to the darkness in Hell.

It is designed to exploit any and all weaknesses you may have. Satan… is real. And he’s very subtle. He’ll say, oh its okay… to do this or that… One time someone told me that it would be okay to miss a church service and get a group of people together to play paintball. There’ll be no one there…

I wish you could have seen me 12 years ago. The beginning monologue to my #10 on my top ten favorite movies has a line in it… the person says about something very insignificant… “You see that? That was nothing… but that’s how it always begins… very small.”

One little thing can set you off course… will it? I don’t’ know… but I just know it can… maybe it happens down the road based on decisions we make now. the rudder of a ship in James chapter 3… remember it.

In God’s plan of Salvation his Infinite Justice and Perfect Love meld into the solution for sinful men.
It leaves no one out.
Its ready when we are.
It fits our time, our lifestyle, our calendars—as long as these things are in accordance with God.
It will take us home to Heaven.