Tag Archive | Jeremiah 29:11

Clarifying the Plans


.John 10:10a (HCSB), “A thief comes only to steal and to kill and to destroy.” So what is it that the Enemy desires to steal, kill, and destroy? The answer is obvious—anything God has planned for us!      p 13 FD’s 3rd edition

   It’s obvious that America is in trouble. Chaos reigns in hot spots throughout our land. Too many of our leaders have called upon human reasoning and false arguments to replace the Christian principles upon which our country was founded. Slowly but surely the foundations of our country are being eroded away.

  But you know the same is true for individuals. Rejecting God sets us on the same course of depending upon human reasoning and false arguments. The outcome of such a choice places our lives, families, and ,therefore, our country at risk.

And because we are not motivated to spend time with God in prayer and in His word, we are ignorant of the following Truths:

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 NIV

The second half of John 10:10 reveals an aspect of God’s plan for His children, “I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.” p 13 FD’s 3rd edition

Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV), ‘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.’ p 24 FD’s 3rd edition


How about we examine the two plans

Cooperating with God’s plan produces

… Galatians 5:22-23. This is the familiar verse describing the fruits of the Spirit. When God puts a thought into your mind, then, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, or selfcontrol, for example, is the desired end. The purpose behind thoughts influenced by God is meant to conform us into the image of His Son. p 54 FD 3rd edition

Rejecting God’s plan produces

Now the works of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, moral impurity, promiscuity, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and anything similar. Galatians 5:19-21

So why do individuals choose Satan’s plan over God’s plan?

In their case, the god of this age has blinded the minds of the unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.         2 Corinthians 4:4 HCSB


Please open our eyes LORD. Lead us out of our darkness into Your Light!

Growing old certainly has it downers!


   For example, when I look in a mirror, or decide to move after sitting for a spell! Or my energy level gives out before I’m finished with a project. And I’m always on the lookout for a hairstyle  that doesn’t shout out to anyone who notices it that I am an old woman. 

Living in a world that is obsessed with outward appearances,

    I’m nagged with the fiery dart of over focusing on how I look on the outside. Just watch tv for a few minutes and you will see what I mean. So how do I resist such temptations? The Truth thought to undo this temptation is 2 Samuel 16:7, “For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” (Whew, that’s a comfort!)

   I want to see myself through God’s eyes, not man’s.

     I have the desire to travel to the 3rd world country where my son and his family will be living after stateside. I did get to go once–living in the bush, struggling at times, but I did it! And I was no spring chicken!

     Next year I will be visiting my son, daughter in law, and 2 grandsons while my son is studying overseas.  I am ecstatic about that! But realistically, as my age increases, my visits might diminish. 

So, I fight the fiery dart of fear

that my health might play out, preventing me from making such trips. 

Self-Awareness is good.  Self-centeredness, not so good.

    I do want to be more self aware so that I can be realistic about my limitations, but I know I must be careful to resist the temptation to overdo the self-focusing. I don’t want to forget that I live my life for Christ. I want to focus on the Truth that

“it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20  

     Besides, too much self-focusing narrow’s one’s vision! And that would make me more vulnerable to Satan’s fiery darts. Nope, don’t intend on cooperating with the enemy on that one. Instead, if I’m smart, I will make a mature (I’m old enough) decision to cooperate with God’s plans. 

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. Jeremiah 29:11

If I make that my focus, then I need not fear growing old! For I will make my plans as God leads, trusting Him to give me what is needed, when it’s needed to fulfill those plans. Like it says in 2 Corinthians 9:8. (Won’t miss out on anything that way!!!)


Facing the Future, whatever it brings!

    Once again we are wrapped up in a presidential election. Once again the fiery darts of negativity are being aimed and far too often are reaching their mark. In the past, I have allowed these fiery darts to victimize my thinking, tempting me to hopelessness and despair as I endured yet another presidential election, but NOT THIS YEAR!

   How could I possibly face such a bleak future as seems likely for our country, considering the insecurity cast by the growing threat of terrorism, the rebellion reflected in the moral upheaval in our courts considering abortion and same-sex marriage, the rejection of our country’s foundational principles evident in congressional decision, etc?

   For I know that when society collectively rejects God, then we are set on a path of destruction. And as long as society collectively continues to reject God, there is no hope that things will improve–on the contrary, things will continue to deteriorate. 

   Again, I pose the question, “How could I possibly face such a bleak future and not feel overwhelmed by despair and hopelessness?”

Here’s how!

 Every time I am tempted with despair and/or hopelessness, or any other fiery dart thoughts of a similar nature, I put the following plan into action: 


I recognize those thoughts for the fiery darts they are. I know that focusing on them will eat away at my faith, weakening me with every attack. 


 I reject such thoughts, so as to prevent them from taking root and influencing further attitudes and actions.


I replace such hopeless thinking with Truth thoughts and those thoughts become my focus from which my attitude and actions spring from. 

Truth thoughts such as:

if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14, NIV

   I would like to quote Tony Evans’s comment from Decision magazine, February 2016, titled Prayer That Turns A Nation, p. 13

“If enough Christians in places of responsibility in the fields of medicine, law, government, education, the media, and even the church begin to humble themselves and pray and seek God’s face and turn from their wicked ways, we could influence this culture and make the presence of Christ felt top to bottom and bottom to top.”

   But what if that doesn’t happen? What’s a Truth thought for that despairing question?

My dear readers, the day will come when:

. . .  that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow—of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth —and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.Philippians 2:10-11

   And those of us who are Christians, what does the future hold for us in the midst of society’s rejection of God?

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.
Jeremiah 29:11, NIV

And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19 HCSB

   Therefore, I face my personal future and my country’s future with the confident assurance promoted in the above verses. On a daily basis, I commit to cooperating with God as He works out His plans for me making sure that my attitudes and actions are based on Truth thoughts not fiery dart thinking. And daily I pray 2 Chronicles 7:14 for myself, my family, my friends, and my country. 


Is 67 too old to dream?



Sometimes I feel like it is.

Especially when I think about the things in my life that have not turned out like I use to dream they would.

 A 67 year old should be reflecting on the dreams they had as a younger person and be basking in the wonder of living in the aftermath of those youthful dreams. Shouldn’t they?

 I am 67 but the dreams I had for a big part of my life never materialized. Instead, it became the source of some of the greatest of my disappointments and pain.

 If I focused only on my greatest disappointments and pain, I would have long ago drowned in them. You know, that was and continues to be our enemy’s plan.

 And even now, it would suit him to keep me focused on the dreams I never realized.

 But, if I did that then I wouldn’t have known the dreams that were fulfilled. Many of my dreams, the most important ones, were constructed by the One who loves me most from the broken pieces of my shattered dream. I have even realized some dreams that I never even thought to dream of.

 So, while the fiery darts whisper to me that I am too old to dream there is another Voice I listen to. And this is the Voice that says to me, “I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you; not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.”

This Voice doesn’t indicate that I have to stop dreaming when I get old. So, I will continue to dream about the places He would have me go and the things He would have me do.

 I’m 67 years old and the One I love tells me to keep on dreaming!



Fiery Darts In Action (but not for long)

Perhaps this whole thing about fiery darts is still sort of foggy–what they are, how to deal with them, etc.?

   If that is the case with any of my readers, then please allow me to share a potential calamity that my son and daughter in law recently faced that I hope will clear away some of that fog.

   In anticipation of attending an university in the UK next year for his master’s work, my son, daughter in law, and their two small sons (plus all of the paraphernalia that entails) made their way to an airport in Africa to board their plane. My son’s plans were to meet with professors to tie up any loose ends having to do with his registration. They hoped to have some time to look into housing possibilities as well. A few days later we planned to join them and together we would enjoy a vacation that we all had looked forward to and planned on for months. 

   However, upon arriving at their airline’s check in counter, they were blind sided with the news that their plane had left without them. Apparently, there was some confusion about the departure time. Then to add to the dilemma they faced, they were told their tickets were not refundable($2300)! Oh, and wait, there’s more! The only plane that was scheduled to go to the city where the university is located wouldn’t be leaving for another week. Of course, that would mean we would arrive before them and that would just mess everything up! ! ! ! !

   Immediately, my son placed a couple of phone calls–one to me and one to a fellow missionary friend. After my son shared the details of the ordeal with me, I prayed for him, said goodbye and got busy calling all my friends to prayer, urging them to notify their friends to pray. In a matter of minutes, people all over the United States and the world were praying. (My son is a missionary and many of his friends live scattered throughout the globe.)

Now, this is where the fiery dart explanation comes in!

   With rapid succession, thoughts of panic, fear, and worry, bombarded my mind. (If they were doing that to me, imagine what they could have been doing to my son & daughter in law). Just imagine how all of our plans would have been derailed if we gave into such negative thinking or yep, you’ve got it,fiery darts!

Now, I preach (might as well admit it) that the most efficient way to extinguish fiery darts are to:

1)recognize the fiery darts

2)reject the fiery darts

3)replace the fiery darts (with Truth thoughts)

Therefore, here are some of the Truth thoughts God brought to my mind:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28, NIV  (If we were willing to cooperate with God in this, He would work all this out for our good)

Don’t worry about anything, but in everything through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 (After taking this turn of events to the LORD, we needed to thank Him for how He was going to work things out and accept His peace.)

You will keep the mind that is dependent on You in perfect peace, for it is trusting in you. Isaiah 26:33 (We needed to trust (focus on)God so that we wouldn’t freak out and be at peace)

We knew it was God’s way to take all the scatter pieces of our plan and put them back together again! His plans are always to benefit us. (Jeremiah 29:11) That was our confidence because that is God’s character!

   A few hours later, after purchasing a one way ticket to another country, where they would transfer planes, they would arrive at a city in the UK 4 1/2 hours from their original destination. There they would rent a car and drive to the city where the university is located. Several hours late, but arriving nevertheless. And, I might add, with a sound mind!

   And concerning that non-refundable ticket?

Waiting on God with thoughts of trust (not fiery darts)

Our Nation’s Peril and Our Nation’s Hope


   First of all, may I ask you a few questions?

Do you condemn yourself or put yourself down?

Do you think others, especially close to you, don’t think well of you?

Do you over focus on your fears?

Do you find yourself doubting God?

Do you struggle with inconsistency in reading your Bible and praying?  

   Have you recognized questions such as these as the fiery darts Ephesians 6:16 identifies? Satan knows quite well, that these fiery darts will never permeate the Shield of Faith. Therefore, what do you think his first plan of action will be with individuals? Of course, tempt an individual to search everywhere but God’s Word for the answers to questions like the ones above. And if he can manipulate enough individuals to reject God and/or His Word, then his plan to destroy a nation falls easily into place.

   Our country’s leaders, some even calling themselves Christians, speak and act in ways that contradict God’s ways. For example, the Bible makes it quite clear how God feels about abortion. Yet, some of our most powerful leaders stand firm in their support of organizations that promote abortion! I just don’t get it. Why would anyone, claiming to be a Christian, support something God is against? But wait, I think I do!

   People who have rejected God and His word, are easily manipulated into seeing lies as truth and truth as lies. You recall those questions I started out with? Well, Satan’s plan is to get us so self absorbed that we loose sight of who God is and the good plans He has for us.(Jeremiah 29:11) We can’t believe that He can take the bad things we are experiencing in life and turn them into something good and thereby enrich our lives by them. (Romans 8:28)

   We look for solutions to the problems we encounter in our lives and Satan makes sure that our search for answers takes us no where near the Scriptures. Every idea we get from him may feel like an answer at the beginning but only serves to intensify our problems and complicate our lives even more. (Proverbs 14:12)

  As Christians, we must seek God’s will and wisdom and apply them to the problems we face. As we hold up our Shield of Faith, then we are protected from being manipulated and distracted by the fiery darts aimed at us by Satan.

   Here’s how it works!

    God’s light will shine forth for all to see and as God helps us, then we can help others. (2 Corinthians 1:4) As His light is experienced and shared then that light grows and the darkness is dispelled. (John 1:5) Eventually, as individuals turn back to God, then a nation has hope. (2 Chronicles 7:14)



Retirement and Choices

   As some of you know, my husband will be retiring June 28th from the wonderful church of which he has pastored for 27 years. After that we will be entering untried territory! There are already some questions that are attempting to weasel their way into our minds. A couple of “What If” questions. Such as:

What if you aren’t able to manage on your readjusted income?

What if your health begins to fail?

   These sound like sensible questions. Obviously our lifestyle will have to be adjusted to accommodate our change of income. But as we attempt to answers such questions, we are faced with the realization that many of our hopes and dreams for the future hinge on having adequate income coupled with good health. If either or both are taken away, then so goes our hopes and dreams.

   Of course, you and I both know these are nothing but fiery darts meant to evoke fear and worry into our thinking.  The idea that decisions would be made based on thoughts of fear and worry makes no sense for a Christian. I desire to make decisions based on the power, love, and sound mind that God has given me. Allowing our minds to be infiltrated by the poison of such thinking will certainly undermine the faith and trust we have in God.

   Therefore, when the thoughts of fear and doubt come knocking on the door of my mind, I will send the following Truth thoughts to answer:

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV)

But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19 (KJV)

I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread. Psalm 37:25 (NIV)

Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! Luke 12:24 (KJV)

Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. Matthew 6:31-32 (KJV)

Now, as I see it, we have a choice to make. 

We can cooperate with Satan and succumb to the fiery darts of fear and worry!


We can cooperate with God as He works out His plans for us day by day!

Our Choice!
The Obvious Choice!