Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Man's Hands, God's Plans

Think back over some events of your life that impacted you greatly, or caused a distinct turning point. Do you recall things occurring, that seemed like chance then, but as time progressed, you realize God was in the situation, orchestrating the events to accomplish a specific purpose?

"And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city. Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child" (Luke 2:1-5).

It has been supposed that this census was for the purpose of setting up a tax roll. Families were instructed to journey to their ancestral home to register. Since Joseph was “of the house and lineage of David” (see 1 Samuel 17:12), he and a very-pregnant Mary had to make the arduous trip from Nazareth to Bethlehem.

“So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered”
(Luke 2:6).

God took the edict of Caesar to get His chosen ones to Bethlehem, because that had been prophesied as the birthplace of the Messiah:

"But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times”
(Micah 5:2).

Did God place the idea for the census in the mind of Caesar Augustus (the first of the Roman emperors) to bring the couple to the chosen city? It seems likely that the Lord took the plans of man, and put His hands on them to bring His purposes to fruition.

Man’s plans, God’s hands. Our Lord is always at work, taking what may seem to be an inconsequential happenstance or a life-upside-down experience involving a friend, family member, boss, church leader, or even someone we don’t know – to propel us down the road of experiencing more of His plan for our lives. We have a choice – to let God handle the situation and direct us, or to bow up our neck against it, and maybe miss God’s best. I pray I’ll remember that God is never standing on my life’s sidelines wringing His hands. I want to learn to relax in His strong but tender grip.

Best wishes from lefthandrightbrain:)