Proverbs 19:20-21 Common English Bible
20 Listen to advice and accept instruction,
so you might grow wise in the future.
21 Many plans are in a person’s mind,
but the Lord’s purpose will succeed.
The Word of God for the Children of God. Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
A “human’s heart” is a little world, full of Dreaming, scheming, and planning.
We are always in the business of devising – we naturally call it “progress.”
There is always a “Plan A” and a “Plan” for every letter of the human Alphabet.
It does not matter what language you speak, or how many letters in your own alphabet you have which comprises your native languages or cultural dialects.
To every device of all human hearts, God’s “counsel,” His own personal design, exists parallel, whether in coincidence or in opposition to our own.
In other words,
respecting the object of every human device, God has His own divine design.
Amidst all these various human devices, there is one divine which will prevail.
God is the supreme Ruler over this universe He created.
His plan affects every detail of this creation.
This plan is eternal, and there never was, nor ever will be, another plan.
God’s complete control over His creation is based on His omniscience and omnipotence.
Since God has knowledge of all things actual and possible, His eternal plan is not based upon blind choice.
Instead, God has wisely chosen a plan in which all details will finally work together to bring about the greatest good.
Not only has God chosen the best possible plan; He also has the power and authority to bring it about.
When God promises to do something, there is no question that it will be done.
Think about it like this ….
Every manufacturer designs his product with the right components, engineered to fulfill the function that the product is created to perform.
In essence, the purpose of the product dictates the potential required to fulfill the manufacturer’s intent.
This principle holds true for all creation, including human beings.
This means the nature, design, and qualities of human beings were decided by God and created by him according to what he determined was best for the sake of his own divine purpose.
Every command in the Bible is proof of the reality of human responsibility from God’s perspective.
God is the divine Potter who has the “absolute right to make from the same lump of clay one vessel for special use and another for ordinary use” according to His own purpose (Romans 9:21).
Yet this “clay” has a will and is responsible for the choices it freely makes. (Read Jeremiah. 18:1-12 to see how the prophet subtly intertwines both of these concepts.)
God is a God of purpose.
Everything in life has a purpose.
Every human being entered into the earth realm with a God-given purpose.
Purpose is the reason for the creation.
In essence, it is the reason why a thing exists.
When God created humanity, He had two overarching purpose in mind: relation and vacation.
The first purpose is God’s personal reason for creating us for relationship with Himself.
The second is His executive reason for creating us for the lifework He designed us to carry out for Him on the earth.
Since we were born with a God-given purpose and fulfilling that purpose must be our primary mission in life.
Our fulfillment, satisfaction and peace of mind are all tied to that purpose.
God created us with a “Plan A” purpose in mind for our life and it’s our responsibility to find it.
The secret to accomplishing great things is simple: Find and pursue the kind of work you are meant to do—your “purpose.”
Purpose can add not only years to your life but life to your years.
Prior to your birth, God installed in you all of the necessary gifts, talents and abilities you would need to fulfill his purpose for your life.
Those gifts, talents and abilities help define your purpose. For E.g., a bird was created by God to fly. If it does not fly, then it has not fulfilled its purpose.
Without a purpose, life is an experiment or a chaotic journey that results in frustration, disappointment and failure.
In absence of purpose,
time has no meaning; energy has no reason and when we do not know our reason for existence, we are just wandering, wasting valuable time.
Without purpose, we can only exist.
Thus, to know our purpose is to know our significance, to know our significance is to know our direction, to know our direction is to know our Destiny.
Purpose is the end for which the means exist.
So, we must realize that our fulfillment in this life is dependent on our becoming and doing what we were born to be and do.
If you want to know your God-given purpose, you must know and be in bond with your maker, (Genesis 1:27 and Genesis 2:7).
When the Lord God created us, He gave each of us an instruction manual.
It is called the Bible – the Written Word of God.
It Says in Proverbs 19:21 “You can make many plans, but the LORD’s purpose will prevail.”
Therefore, God’s purpose is more important than our plans and His purpose will precede our plan.
Therefore, we should seek to have our plans in principle compatible with God’s counsel.
The original purpose for mankind, defined and established by God in Genesis 1, was to “rule (have dominion) over all the earth.”
Since the word “dominion” in this case means to reign and rule, the Creator wired all humans with the capacity and natural ability to lead.
God created people to reflect His image, to rule over creation, and to reproduce godly offspring.
We can conclude that human beings are wired for leadership.
There is no finer example for leadership than Lord Jesus Christ.
He declared, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep” (John 10:11).
It is within this verse that we see the perfect description of a great leader. He is one who acts as a shepherd to those “sheep” in his care.
Good leadership is always obvious by honorable character and selfless service to the society.
Jesus had confidence in His God-given purpose.
We read about this in the gospel of Luke 4:18- 21
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord. And He began to say to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”
Jesus was never off purpose; He always knew what He was doing because He always knew why He was doing it. So, he said “I am the good shepherd…”
The shepherd is one who has several roles in regard to his sheep.
He cares, leads, feeds, nurtures, comforts, corrects and protects.
The shepherd of the Lord’s flock leads by modeling godliness and righteousness in his own life and encouraging others to follow his example.
Hence, our ultimate example—and the One we should follow—is Christ Himself.
This is why Apostle Paul said, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1).
A good leader guides, corrects and disciplines those in his care when they go astray.
Without resentment or an overbearing spirit, but with a “spirit of gentleness” (Galatians 6:2)
The leaders we remember most, in history or our own past, are the ones, who have inspired or empowered us.
The word inspire comes from the Latin, meaning “to breathe life into.”
Accordingly, when you are working toward things that inspire you, it literally makes you feel more alive.
The reason these leaders are memorable is because they have a sense of their own purpose.
Our purpose is the foundation of our leadership and life.
“Plan A” gives us the stability to stand, because when the tough times come (and they do) and the ground underneath begin to shake (and it will) it is His “Plan A” which becomes our overarching sense of purpose that keeps us firm.
Keep in mind, your existence is evidence that this generation, of which you are a part, needs something that your life contains.
Leadership is a ministry, not mere management.
It is a position of humble, loving, caring service.
Those whom God designates as leaders are called not to be governing monarchs, but humble servants, not professional celebrities, but laboring servants.
Those who would lead God’s people must above all exemplify sacrifice, devotion, submission, and lowliness.
Jesus Himself gave us the pattern when He stooped to wash His disciples’ feet, a task that was customarily done by the lowest of slaves (John 13).
If the Lord of the Creation would give literally everything up, submit Himself to do that, then no leader has a right to think of himself as a VIP.”
At the most basic level, a servant leader is someone who leads others by example.
Good leaders develop through a never-ending process of self-study, education, training, and experience.
Our quality of life depends on the quality of our leaders.
And since no one else seems to be volunteering, it’s up to each one of us.
If you have ever had those “lifelong” dreams of leadership, now is the time.
God needs you. Now you must proceed to unearth the leader hidden within you.
What is leadership?
At the most basic level, a leader is someone who leads others.
It is a process by which one person influences the thoughts, attitudes, and behaviors of others.
Leaders set a direction for the rest of us; they help us see what lies ahead; they help us visualize what we might achieve; they encourage us and inspire us.
Without humble direction and leadership of human beings quickly degenerates into argument and conflict, because we will each inevitably see one too many things in one too many different ways and will lean toward different solutions.
Leadership helps to point us in the same direction and harness our efforts jointly.
Leadership is the ability to get other people to do something significant that they might not otherwise do.
It’s energizing people toward a goal.
Leadership is the act of influencing/serving others out of Christ’s interests in their lives, so they accomplish God’s purposes for and through them.
Influence comes from serving by modeling, instructing, exhorting, evaluating, confronting, training, and releasing, Influence does not come by overpowering, belittling, manipulating, threatening, avoiding, competing and controlling
The Bible is the first place we should look to in order to learn how to become leaders today, preparing for the world tomorrow.
The biblical record reveals God’s demand for quality leaders during times of human crisis.
His search for effective leadership is expressed in statements such as:
“The Lord has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him leader of his people…” (I Samuel 13:14).
This scripture reveals that whenever an organization has a lack of quality, legitimate and just leaders, national deterioration occurs.
It also reveals that God’s remedy to this type of situation is the discovery and rising up of new leaders committed to justice and righteousness.
From page 1 of the Bible, we are put on notice that God holds us accountable for the moral choices and actions we make.
This is why the wise teacher wrote, “The conclusion, when all has been heard, is fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil” (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14)
“God is absolutely sovereign, but his sovereignty never functions in such a way that human responsibility is minimized or mitigated” (see Ephesians 1:11, Acts 17:26, Matthew 6:26, Proverbs 21:1, Jeremiah 10:23).
God will never do anything contrary His character and purpose.
He will not deceive, being of infinite goodness; He cannot be deceived by any, being of infinite wisdom.
There is no room for second thoughts or after-counsels.
Scripture teaches that “God is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just.
A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he” (Deuteronomy 32:4).
“God is light; in him there is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5).
God also “works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will” (Ephesians 1:11).
God holds all people accountable for their deeds (Rom. 2:4-9; Rev. 20:15-20).
Scripture consistently appeals to humans in a way that recognizes their moral responsibility for the choices they make (Joshua. 24:15; I Kings 18:21; Romans 1:21-28; Jn. 11:26; Acts 7:51; 17:30).
God is able to do anything He desires. “I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted” (Job 42:2).
“He does whatever he pleases in heaven and on earth, in the seas and all the ocean depths” (Psalms 135:6).
The Lord carries out everything exactly as planned.
“God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a human being, that he should repent. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not establish it?” (Numbers 23:19).
All that God has preplanned is as good as done.
Nothing can change it, for there is no authority above God.
As He says through Isaiah, “To whom can you compare me? Whom do I resemble?” (40:25).
God directs the history of the universe along the course of His foreordained plan.
This involves His ability to choose individuals and groups for special purposes in the outworking of this plan.
For instance, Jeremiah and Paul were chosen by God to have special missions even before they were formed in their mother’s wombs (Jeremiah 1:5; Galatians. 1:15).
Because of His complete uniqueness and sovereignty, God is able to declare,
“Truly I am God, I have no peer; I am God, and there is none like me, who announces the end from the beginning and reveals beforehand what has not yet occurred, who says, ‘My plan will be realized; I will accomplish what I desire ….’’’ (Isaiah. 46:9-10; see also Isaiah. 14:24; 43:13).
Proverbs 19:21 is a good word, isn’t it?
Like many are the plans in the mind of a man.
You think about all the plans you and I have come up with at different points in our lives, we’re like we’re going to do this, we’re going to do that.
Like the plans of our mind come and go. They vary, they shift.
We think about some plans we’ve made that we thought were the greatest thing in the world.
Like if only this could happen and then they actually did happen, and we realized that wasn’t the greatest thing in the world.
That actually wants helpful at all.
So, our plans created by our finite minds are often times, let’s be honest, foolish minds and I don’t mean that to sound overly negative but just to be real.
Like, we often make foolish plans because we don’t have all the knowledge, we do not have all perspective.
We make plans, we don’t realize how it’s going to affect this person or that person.
We make plans for our lives that we don’t realize it’s going to lead to this or that.
And so, in the end we make some foolish plans.
It is good to know that, like Proverbs 19:21 says, it’s the purpose of the Lord that will stand.
That God’s purpose, he doesn’t flounder, he has all the knowledge, he has all perspective, he never has done or will do anything foolish. Never. He’s all wise.
It’s good to know that it’s only the purpose of all wise God that will stand.
So does not that lead us then to pray, in the name of God, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit today and just submit our plans to his purpose.
To pray oh God, you are all wise, you are all good, everything you do is good, and your purposes will be accomplished.
And we are so thankful for that.
We are so thankful because your purpose is good, it is good because it brings you glory and it is good because by your grace, it’s good for us.
Oh God, we praise you.
We praise Your “Plan A!”
We thank you for Your “Plan A!”
We reach for Your “Plan A!”
We long to hug and embrace Your “Plan A!” exactly as our Savior Jesus did.
That your purpose involves the salvation of sinners for the glory of your name.
That your purpose God, is to save sinners like me, like others who are listening to this by the cross of Christ that we might be reconciled to you, that we might live in steadfast relationship with you that will last forever, for eternal life. We are so thankful that, that it is thy divine purpose alone which will stand always.
Proverbs 19:21 Reminds Us to Submit to The Plans of The God of all Created Things.
So, Creator God we yield our plans to you today, we lay our plans down upon thy Altar, and we pray have your way. Have your way in our lives, have your way in our families, have your way in our churches, have your way with us we pray.
Lead us, guide us, direct us according to your purposes, not our plans. And as we make plans which we need to do and comes to this or that in our lives, please, please, please help us to yield our plans continually to you. And to make our plans in accordance with our purpose, in alignment with your purpose alone.
Help us to plan for the spread of your glory in the world. Help us to plan for the spread of your gospel in others’ lives. Help us to plan for your love, your mercy, your grace through made known through whatever plans we make. Because we know this is ultimately your purpose. Because we want our plans ultimately to fulfill your purpose that will stand. So, we pray yielding our plans to you for the accomplishment of your purpose in our lives, in our Savior Jesus name. Amen.