Can’t Quarantine the Gospel: “God Has a Master Plan”

This Devotional is part of our “Can’t Quarantine the Gospel” series where members of the church are contributing morning Quiet times during this time of Social Distancing. Today is Day 15 of our series. Any of the Devotionals can be read as a stand alone quiet time.

God Has a Master Plan

By Patrick Genova

God has a master plan in effect at all times in our lives. Sometimes that can be really hard to believe. I know there have been moments in my life when I have failed, when I have blown it, and I wonder to myself how can this also be a part of Gods master plan for my life? When things are confusing, troubling, discouraging it really does give me a lot of peace to know and reflect on that it is still a part of Gods plan and He has always planned on using it to do something incredible.

Q: How is your trust in God’s master plan for you right now?
Q: What is hurting your trust?

Trusting in God’s master plan through hard times is so tough, but I have seen time and time again that His plan is actually better than I thought.

Our son’s unique first birthday

Recently our son turned one and we knew it was going to be a very unusual first year birthday in quarantine.

Ephesians 3:20-21 

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

At first, we were bummed because we had a plan to celebrate that was totally out the window with social distancing in effect. The stage was set for us to be discouraged about it all. However, I remember we both had a quiet time the night before his birthday and God really helped us both just let go as we reflected on all the good things God has given us with this awesome little boy! The party didn’t seem like such a big deal anymore. This is when God did more than we could ask or imagine. First, both our families got on Zoom to sing happy birthday to Jacob and celebrate together online which was a joyfully glorious disaster, we really loved it because it was so unique! Soon after that a car begins honking outside our house and we look out and see disciples who have “Happy birthday Jacob” written on their car and a huge sign too! We were blown away by it all and we will be able to tell our son the story of his first birthday in quarantine for the rest of his life!

Q: What is discouraging you right now?
Q: What is distressing you?

God has a plan for whatever you are dealing with right now and that plan is better than anything you could think to ask or even imagine!

Falling Short

Romans 8:28

28 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.

I can often feel discouraged about my own shortcomings. The things I don’t like about myself. In those moments, this is a promise I have to hold on to. It really helps me “zoom out” and remember that even my shortcomings can be used for my good and God’s purpose.

Q: What is a weakness of yours that really discourages you the most when it shows it’s face?
Q: How has Christ turned your weakness to strength?

Think about the Apostle Paul, once a persecutor of the Church who God used later to transform the Church. God took that same zeal Paul had before he was a Christian and did something incredible with what could have otherwise been seen as a failure or weakness.

Painful Circumstances

What do we do when we are distressed not because of how we fell short, but because of something happening to us? How do we deal with feeling distressed when something is happening to us rather than because of us?

We can look to Job to understand that better.

Job lost everything! Job lost his family, fortune, and his health. How in the world could this be part of God’s plan?! For 37 chapters in the book of Job God listens to Job and his friends try to understand and explain why this has all happened. God takes 3 chapters to respond. God is a great listener and He is able to get to the point pretty quickly! This is part of God’s response:

Job 38:4-7 

“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
Tell me, if you understand.
Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
On what were its footings set,
or who laid its cornerstone—
while the morning stars sang together
and all the angels[a] shouted for joy?

God reminds Job that he has an entire galaxy to balance. God reminds Job that he put everything he see’s around him in it’s place and keeps it all in order. If God can balance an entire universe, can’t he keep bringing good out of bad in our lives? God truly understands what is going on and why it is happening and it is not some cosmic joke. Everything has a purpose, everything has a plan, even if we can’t see it.

God is making his masterpiece

I love the picture below. It is a photographic Mosaic: a large photograph filled with many small ones. If we zoomed in on each frame I wonder what we would find there. If we zoomed in on each frame of our lives what we would find? In my life I would find pain, failure, and sadness, but also joy, love, and happiness. If we allow God to have all the frames of our lives, good and bad, He can put them all together to create His masterpiece. He can organize each frame in a perfect way. In fact, the frames of our lives that are painful are essential to His masterpiece!

Q: What is going on right now outside of your control that has you struggling with God’s master plan?
Q: Think about all the ways God can use it for his Masterpiece.
Reflect: What is a situation you have had in the past that was hard, but God did something really special with it?

Art Challenge: Find a creative way to illustrate the scripturewe know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him” (Romans 8:28). 

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