Friday, August 12, 2016

What is God’s Plan?

Living in the Bible Belt, it has become a daily experience it seems to hear the phrase, God has a plan for you. When good-intentioned people say this, they usually are trying to comfort a friend or family member who is in some sort of transition. A lost job, a serious illness, or even some tragedy, nothing seems to be beyond a friend using the phrase, “It is going to be ok. God has a plan for you.” Let me just say, I REALLY DON’T LIKE this saying, and it is definitely NOT Orthodox.

In this week’s “Ask Father” series we will answer the question, “What is God’s plan?” Every day we are faced with choices, some life-changing, when we deeply depend upon understanding that God does indeed have a plan for us. The problem is contemporary American Christianity tends to view God as handing out material blessings in exchange for our loyalty. This also is NOT Orthodox. We can never forget that God said, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me.” (Mark 8.34) Clearly He couldn’t have meant that His plan was to shower us with material blessings.

The proper understanding of God’s plan is crucial to our relationship with Him. If we constantly look to God as the bestower of material blessings, we will doubt Him when those blessings do not come at our requested time. The truth is God’s plan has NOTHING to do with material blessings and EVERYTHING to do with eternal comfort embraced by His unending love. How we choose to accept His plan will not only impact how we live now on Earth; it will affect how we experience His love in Heaven.

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