Okay… let’s have an honest show of hands here. How many of you will boldly come out of the closet today and declare to everyone that you were a secret fan of the “A-Team” TV series that first aired back in the mid-eighties? Come on now! You may be a member of my generation who watched the show when it originally aired or one of the faithful who have watched it throughout the years since then through the marvels of TV reruns! My wife and I did… as have our four kids and we are proud of it!
The leader of the team Col. John “Hannibal” Smith was known for his unorthodox plans and enjoyed exclaiming: “I love it when a plan comes together!” The writers of the big screen movie a few years back that was based on the popular TV series, used that phrase to jump start the movie as the opening fast action scene came to a conclusion.
I had one of those “I love it when a plan comes together” moments this morning! I pray each evening and before I get my wife up each day that she will have an easy and peaceful “get-up, go and do” day… and that’s exactly what happened today! When I first went into the room she was resting comfortably and opened her eyes and followed my movements as I got her sweater and slippers ready. I can’t say that she smiled right away but she was obviously aware of my activities as I sang a short good morning ditty to her (making up the song as I went along!), prayed and then read from our 100+ healing scripture list.
Everything was going well as I got her up and helped her into her sweater. Today I had a sweater that was given to her that has various colors of wool knit into its pattern. As I assisted her I reminded her of Joseph’s “coat of many colors” that symbolized all of his special God given gifting’s and talents and then reminded her of all the special talents and gifts that the Lord has endowed her with. I like to take every opportunity that I can to remind her of who she is!
Once the sweater was in place I knelt down and began to put her slippers on. Suddenly and without any warning she simply slipped off the bed! I immediately reached out with my left hand to hold her up but since I was not well supported on one knee, I began to fall along with her. For some reason it just seemed a bit funny to me and I related my humor to Piper. In the midst of falling over I was able to shift my left leg under her like a bench and thereby hold her up until I could shift around, stand up and lift her back to a safe distance on the edge of the bed.
Once I got her stabilized I looked up at her and she had a huge smile on her face! That made me laugh and I retorted “You liked that didn’t you? You thought that was fun didn’t you!” Well, she just kept smiling and gave me that old glint of mischievousness in her left eye that I hadn’t seen for a while! I have to tell you… THAT MADE MY DAY! My daily prayer that she would have an easy “get-up, go and do” day was fulfilled at that very moment! That’s when I sat back and look up to heaven and thought “Lord, thank you. I love it when a plan (or prayer in this case) comes together!”
And speaking about plans concerning yours and my futures… One of my cousins reminded me of the words of the prophet in Jeremiah 29:11 yesterday as a comment to our blog post. In reference to some incorrect suggestions and prophesies that were given to the people, Jeremiah reminded them of the true counsel of the Lord saying: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you an EXPECTED end.” (KJV) The God’s Word © Version gives us a modern translation that may be a little closer to the meaning of the original Greek by stating it as, “I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a FUTURE and a hope (once again, better translated EXPECTATION)”
As I studied this earlier today, I thought back of all the “words from the Lord” that have been given to me and my wife over the years of our Christian experience. One of my earliest recollections was of a man that for a short time attended that little fellowship at the motel with us about the time that the A-Team was on TV. He had called me and urgently informed me that he had a “special word” from the Lord and would be right over to our house. When he got there we went for a walk in the neighborhood and he proceeded to tell me that “the Lord had told him to tell me” that I would die if we continued assisting the Pastor and his wife in their ministry.
Well, that obviously upset me and at the same time did not sit right with me. I didn’t really have any opportunity to discuss it with the individual as he jumped into his car and drove off as soon as we returned to my home! But through a lengthy discussion with our Pastor, I received one of my first in-depth lessons in discerning prophecies. In the last few years I have received multiple “words from the Lord” from others concerning different aspects of my care for my wife. As with that first purported prophecy years back, many of these “words” did not sit right with me. But this time I knew to immediately reference what was being told to me in alignment with what the Bible says.
When we look back to the previous verses Jeremiah was referencing to in verse eleven, we will see that he was commenting on the Lord’s instructions where He laid out a caution saying: “Don’t let the prophets and mediums who are among you trick you. Don’t even listen to your dreams. These people are prophesying lies to you in my name. I didn’t send them, declares the Lord.” (Jeremiah 29:8-9 God’s word ©)
I don’t understand this to be an across the board dismissal of the prophet’s ministry or of words that people hear from the Lord. I do believe it to be a lesson in checking out everything you hear from anyone including yourself, to see if it aligns itself with the truth as written in the Word of God. I always admire pastors and Christian speakers or writers that encourage those listening to them to not just take what they say for granted but to check it out in their Bibles for themselves!
In our experience, we have received some “words from the Lord” that were right on the mark and others that had absolutely no truth or bearing on our situation. If I’ve learned one thing over the years, I have learned that the bottom line is that I am responsible for what I allow into my mind and spirit. Over these past six years I’ve especially come to realize that if it doesn’t agree with God’s plans for our future as lined out in His Word, that I quickly let it pass right past me! No matter how much natural sense the instructions, suggestions or words of wisdom seems to make… if it doesn’t agree with God’s plans in His written Word, then it make absolutely NO sense for me (or you) to follow!
After all, His plans are for peace and not disaster. They are plans that give us a good future and His expected end. That’s the plan I definitely want to see come together for me… HOW ABOUT YOU? Have a great day! Stay in tune to His Word, and keep asking yourself… “What or Who’s PLANS am I expecting to believe today?”