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Sometimes life can feel out of control, chaotic, and sometimes like we just have too much on our plate. In our obedience to do the things God is calling us to do, we can become legalistic and create rituals and routines for ourselves to be that “good Bible Study girl”, so to speak that the Lord never intended for us to do. If this sounds like you, then you are in the right place. Today we are discussing 6 steps to Christian planning that honors God.
When things become overwhelming, and I feel like I am just checking off the boxes of the routine I created, thinking “this is what God wants me to do”, I take a step back from it all, take a break from the studies and assignments in question, get in the Word of God and pray it out. Seek His will for the season of life you are walking in, and He will show you how to find balance and if there are things that were just for a season that need to be let go of.
This may not be the popular opinion, as we generally think in our flesh we have to be all things to all people, but that is not what God purposed for us.
How do you make decisions that honor God?
Ask the Holy Spirit if there is anything He wants you to remove from your schedule. What does He want your schedule and time serving His purpose to look like? Take appropriate responsibility for the things that are not working in your life. Ask for wisdom to figure out what you can do to make corrections. Recognize the patterns you repeat, which produce results you do not like or want. Do your best to make changes that will be beneficial to your well-being.
“16 So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. 17 The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions.Galatians 5:16-17 (NLT)
“Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.”Proverbs 16:3
“We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.”Proverbs 16:9
We need to have an intentional and purposeful plan for what we do and the things we say yes to, and learn to say no to things that God did not purpose us to do. We can make plans, but unless we take those to the Lord and ensure they line up with His plans for us, they will fail.
A Woman Who Planned Well
Some might ask how planning is biblical, so let’s take a look. I want to give you one example in the Bible of a woman who planned well. If we look at the Proverbs 31 woman, she is a perfect example of planning and being intentional.
“She carefully watches everything in her household and suffers nothing from laziness.”Proverbs 31:27 (NLT)
Planning With Purpose
She was purposeful and intentional, and she was occupied by the things God had purposed for her life, and not bored. She prioritized the things God called her to do, and managed her home effectively and efficiently. And that my friend takes planning.
But let’s take a look at the whole passage of the Proverbs 31 woman for a moment. Everything she done, everything spoken of her, took planning and managing her life and family well. Some say, “well she was not real, just a story, no woman can be all that.” Read this passage carefully, and really think about it. I believe this is more than achievable.
Many women are already doing most of this. No, we may not sew and make clothing for our family or spin wool and flax today. But how many of us run a business or ministry? How many of us get up early and stay late into the night to do all the things needed in caring for our families? Do you help the needy, ensure your family has warm clothing before winter hits, and so much more?
Women today wear many hats, so to speak. Women today are running their families well. All while running a business/ministry, helping others, making financial decisions for the benefit of their family well into the future. Yes, you, my friend, are also a proverbs 31 woman, even though you may not realize it.
A Wife of Noble Character ~ Psalm 31:10-31
10 [b]Who can find a virtuous and capable wife? She is more precious than rubies.
11 Her husband can trust her, and she will greatly enrich his life.
12 She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.
13 She finds wool and flax and busily spins it.
14 She is like a merchant’s ship, bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up before dawn to prepare breakfast for her household and plan the day’s work for her servant girls.
16 She goes to inspect a field and buys it; with her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She is energetic and strong, a hard worker.
18 She makes sure her dealings are profitable; her lamp burns late into the night.
19 Her hands are busy spinning thread, her fingers twisting fiber.
20 She extends a helping hand to the poor and opens her arms to the needy.
21 She has no fear of winter for her household, for everyone has warm[c] clothes.
22 She makes her own bedspreads. She dresses in fine linen and purple gowns.
23 Her husband is well known at the city gates, where he sits with the other civic leaders.
24 She makes belted linen garments and sashes to sell to the merchants.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future.
26 When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness.
27 She carefully watches everything in her household and suffers nothing from laziness.
28 Her children stand and bless her. Her husband praises her:
29 “There are many virtuous and capable women in the world, but you surpass them all!”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised.
31 Reward her for all she has done. Let her deeds publicly declare her praise.
To save space and not make this a 10,000 word post, I am linking several scriptures that apply to each step instead of typing them out here. Please take the time to open each link and read these scriptures. Or print them out for easy reference and read them in your own Bible.Proverbs 31:10-31 (NLT)
Applying God’s Word to your life is the first step in creating new ‘God habits’. To be purposeful and intentional in living a life that honors God.
6 steps to Christian planning that honors God
- Seek God first: Ask His will for our plans
- Write the vision: Journal, keep notes, implement goal setting
- Acquire an accountability partner
- Focus on one thing; step back, pray, ask God for direction, plan with God as the driving force. Master one thing at a time
- Decisions: Do things that honor God, get good advice before making decisions. God examines our actions and holds us accountable. We hold one another accountable.
- Planning: Use a planner to stay focused and on track to develop good habits.
- Can you imagine if the Proverbs 31 woman had a planner back in the day? How much more would she have done?
- So many things to do!Being focused and organized means being more productive and less stressed over managing it all.
Order My Steps Lord
“Order my steps in Your word; let no sin rule over me.”Psalm 119:133
God orders our steps so that we can live a life of holiness, and fulfill His purpose for our life. We cannot make the life-changing big decisions we encounter without being in alignment with the steps God ordained us to take.
Ultimately, God orders our steps so that we can bring Him glory and honor in our life.
We live in a world full of darkness. It is God’s Word that is a light unto our path to guide us in living a life of holiness to the glory of God.
I urge you to read all of Psalms 119. It is full of powerful prayers and life-giving intentions to fill you ever so abundantly with the Word of God for your life. I want to share a quote with you from Sheri Cook, who writes for Grace Unlimited. I love what she says here about attempting to take control of what is not ours to order.
We can make all the plans and routines, but until we invite the Holy Spirit into our planning, our plans will not honor God. They will just be one more box to check off on our already overloaded list of things to do.
Partner with the Holy Spirit in the secret place today, and get your plans in alignment with the plans and purpose God has for your life. Christian planning can and should honor God, not just our agendas.
For those new to planning:
Note: Take it one step at a time. Set one new goal or pick one thing to work on at a time. Make it a habit, and once you have that mastered, choose another to add in. Do not go all in and try to do everything at once. Otherwise, you will get overwhelmed and be back to where you started, and end up giving up.
If you would like us to start a series on Christian Planning that Honors God, leave a comment or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. We only want to provide content that is applicable and beneficial to your life. Please let us know any other topics you would like covered here on the blog as well. Many blessings, friends.