Saturday, 6 August 2011

Plans, goals and vision: following a diversion?

I have been known to cover a few miles now and again. Spending many a time stuck in a jam, following a diversion or completely lost under the direction of my sat nav. I subscribe to the general principle when travelling that you have an end destination in mind and the aim is to get there in one piece, whatever that looks like.

It's the diversions that completely confuse me. They help to avoid the obstacle ahead, but sometimes seem to take us way off our journey. Miss the signs on the diversionary route and suddenly we are completely lost. Don't follow the diversion and we could be stuck in the jam for a while. It's just that if we don't know the route then the journey can be strange; doubt sets in, because we "might have missed the signs". The sat nav is no help,  it insists on taking us back to the obstruction. Assuming we don't detract from this unplanned route we should arrive at our destination.

Following life's diversions can be just like the car journey and yet it is these so called routes that have massive learning for us. A chance to explore our situation and obtain a completely different perspective of where we are going in life. So what do we do when we are on this journey full of diversions?

Don't assume that our goals or vision are not the destination. It might just be that the way this happens is different to how we set out. Being rigid in our approach can mean we miss them. Our vision and goals, may have changed and are far richer and fuller than we had imagined. Now, the argument could be, not to have a plan, goal or vision and see what happens. In Luke 14:28-31, clearly planning is important to ultimately achieve the goal of a task we have in mind. Without it, we run the risk of not completing what we believe God intended. There are many churches that are full of good ideas, but unfortunately no clear plan and the goal is undelivered.

Embrace (not sure at the time we always want to do this, but retrospectively I wish I had), God's diversions are full of learning and adventure developing us for the next task He has planned for us. Reassuring to know that in Romans 1:13 Paul planned many times to visit the church in Rome, but had been prevented in doing so. Ultimately, in James 4:15 we must humbly submit our plans, goals and vision to the Lord.

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