January 15, 2006

God's Presence in Our Plans

Jeremiah 29:11-13

"I know the plans I have for you ... plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11


Some years ago the well-known author James Michener wrote a book called The Drifters. It's a story about young students traveling aimlessly through Asia and Europe, drifting from one day into the next, without plan or purpose. Lots of people today are drifters too. Even if you have everything life has to offer, you can feel unfulfilled and without purpose, drifting from one day to the next. Or maybe you feel as if you've been cut adrift. For example, maybe you've lost your job and you don't see much of a future. Or maybe you've lost your spouse through death or divorce, and you feel as if you've reached the end of the road. Or maybe you just retired and you feel as if you've been put on a shelf. Or perhaps you're permanently disabled and you're not sure how you can go on. If you're feeling adrift for one reason or another, take heart from God's words to us through Jeremiah: "I know the plans I have for you ... plans to prosper you and ... to give you hope and a future." God does not want us to drift through life. He has a purpose and plan for each one of us. Whoever you are, ask yourself, "What does God have in mind for me? And how does God want to use me today so I can have hope and a future?"

Thank you, Lord, for your promise to give us hope and a future. Help us to see your purpose for us and to take comfort in you each day of this new year. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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