Jeremiah: 29: v. 11-12 NIV
11. "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." 12. "Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you."
For the last few years I've struggled with this verse, especially v. 12. I couldn't quite understand why God said we would pray after receiving His plans instead of praying before, then receiving plans for our lives.
Then just a few days ago, out of the blue, an elderly gentleman approached me at the gas pump- he was on the other side. He just started talking about how bad the economy was, the violence in the Middle East and just how dark our future looks. During the conversation I had several things go through my mind as how to respond back. Just as quickly as the conversation started though, it ended. Maybe there wasn't time to respond due to others wanting to get gas.
However, since then God has layed on my heart what's really important; getting His word and the hope that is in Jesus Christ out to others. I decided I wanted to write God's plan of hope and salvation and hand it out to those in need-as God's Spirit leads.
Of course in God's all knowing wisdom He gave me Jeremiah 29: v. 11-12. As I began to write, I looked at the scripture and asked, "Lord, I don't understand. Why wouldn't we pray first, then receive the plans You have?" Suddenly, He gave me the understanding I needed. " You have to believe in what I have for you to be able to ask for and receive it by faith."
Wow! So simple, but what a revelation. He already has the plans for our lives. We don't have to pray for them. We just have to believe and receive them. We certainly want to pray about them and be opened to what they are, but faith comes first.
It's the same with salvation. He's already provided the way. We just have to believe and receive through prayer what He already has given. This will be the foundation for what I've decided for my tract, (devotional), I want to give out so that others may believe, then pray for God's plan for their lives.
Following is a posting of the writing I want to give out. I pray the words belong to God and that His Spirit will minister to others through what's written.