TV Transcripts

“God’s Plan for Our Lives” Conclusion
Broadcast #1620
October 22, 2023

Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1620 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

Phil: If He knows how many hairs are on your head and He plans the destiny of nations, do you not think He has a plan for our lives? Think about that. You know, how many times have we referred to Hebrews 12 where we’re told to run with patience, or endurance, what? The race marked out for us.

Do you know God has already written your story. He’s written the history of your life in advance because He knows the choices you and I will make, some of ‘em won’t be the great greatest will they, but God wants us to get so in tune with Him that we are living out the story He’s planned for us.

You know, I’m sure I’ve said something along this line before, but Sue and I both grew up in a church movement, I guess, denomination, that was very missionary oriented. And so, it was very common for… I mean the pattern was for missionaries to go over and serve whatever term was appropriate for their field, maybe four or five years, and then they’d come home for a year of furlough. Well, part of that was to get rest; part of it was to go around and promote the missionary effort.

But I remember over and over and over again during my growing up years being in missionary rallies of one kind or another, and the emphasis being made at the end of God calling young people to lay down their lives, to serve Him and basically saying, it’s not my life, I’m gonna do your will, Lord and just surrender in that area. Well, that’s very appropriate, wasn’t it? I think a lot of times it came across as, this is for people who wanna be missionaries, who are willing to be missionaries, or preachers, or some kind of fulltime service.

Folks, do you really think that that’s all it’s talking about? Every single person that He ever calls God has His plan for your life and it’s one that we need to just realize, my life is not mine. If I’m Christ’s, He’s called me to step into His story, a story that He’s already written. I know how it’s coming out, but He wants me to live out. It isn’t just about getting saved and then being there, this is about what happens in between. We’re here for a reason and God wants every one of us to live our lives seeking out stepping into His story.

You suppose we’d have more rest, and sense of purpose if we did that? I mean, there’s so much about us that just fights that and struggles, and we live according to natural wisdom far more. Oh, I just pray that I think God wants every one of His children to realize all of the issues of life matter to Him.

Now, I’ll tell this one little thing, I can’t remember if I ever had before or not, but I will risk it. (chuckles) You know, we were in college when Sue and I were in college, we were going together, but also, we were planning. I mean, the sense was, I’m here to be prepared for missionary service, okay, and so that was the whole idea.

And God knows the issues of every heart. There’s no formula here, but God knows the issues of your life. He knows what matters to you, He knows issues that we need to come to a place of surrender about, okay. And it’s different from you, for you and you, but every part of every one of us has things in our lives and in our thinking that matter to us to the point where God has to put His finger on that thing and do something about it and bring us to a point where we’ll lay that on the altar. Not just this general thing, but that thing, I surrender.

Well, like I say, I will risk this, but apparently in Sue’s mind she certainly is not different from most of you either. The question of marriage was an issue, and there was a wrestling, and there was a place where God brought her to where, I don’t know all the details, but the way I remember it was that if I called you to not be married and to go and be a missionary, would you be willing?

And not all the things that we surrender necessarily are taken away from us. We don’t know that one way or another, but if they surrendered God knows, God has the plan, not me. And so that was a point of wrestling. And the Lord brought her to that place where she said, yes, Lord. If that’s what it comes to, I surrender.

How many of you have issues in your life right now where the Lord wants to bring you to that place? You’re not really free until that’s laid down if the Lord puts His hand on it. So, this isn’t just her, this is everybody.

But the interesting thing was I didn’t know anything about this. I was over in the men’s dorm, and I had this incredible sense of freedom come over me that thinking about marriage, and it was marriage to her. I’ll guarantee I got the better deal out of that! (congregation laughing) No question about that. But I was sit... Just out of the blue I was sitting there thinking about it, having this sense of freedom and peace come over me. Like this is God’s plan.

And I was thinking about, now where can we live? And I know about the apartments you can rent from the school, the married couple’s apartments. And it was just churning in my mind, I had this sense of freedom. Well, what I didn’t know was this was absolutely happening at the same time as what was happening with her. You see the Lord at work in our lives if we’ll just listen to Him and learn from Him and learn to learn to live His life and not the one that we’ve planned.

Folks, this world is built on following natural desires. We certainly read that in Ephesians two, didn’t we? Everybody is born with all kinds of desires and ideas. And if we’re gonna be His, if we’re gonna live out this amazing purpose that we see from the before the creation on into the coming ages. The part that matters to us today is, are we participating in that purpose? Do our lives belong to Him?

Because if He has our lives then we can begin to fulfill His purposes. We can be the members of the body of Christ, we can be a blessing and a strength one to another, not because of who we are, or anything but because we are allowing Him to live in and through us.

And it’s hard to talk about this without focusing on the Lord Jesus as the ultimate example. Do you think that His life was just a case of the Father sending Him down here, giving Him a general idea of what He wanted to accomplish and a whole bunch of beliefs and saying, go do it, go figure it out. Everything about the earthly life of Jesus had been planned from all eternity. So many of the things came out of the mouths of prophets long before He ever came.

Oh wait, didn’t Paul say we are created in Christ Jesus to do good works which God prepared in advance for us to do? You see that applied to Jesus. Everything Jesus accomplished, everything He did was something that God had already planned in detail.

So, what was Jesus’ part in this? It was to seek the Father. He said, I didn’t come, Lord, Father, you gave me a body, I came to do your will, not mine. I’m not here to do my will, but the will of Him that sent me. And to finish His work. There was literally a yieldedness to, to fulfill every purpose of God, even with the one that took Him to the cross, that made him a slave and a servant. All of that was planned in advance in every detail. So, his life was not one of trying to figure it out, looking at circumstances and getting upset about ‘em.

And nobody here would ever do that! But all the things that we do when we rely on our own understanding, our own wisdom, what we see, what we feel, what we believe, all these things get in the way of the things God wants to do in and through us. And He wants us to grow up as His children and learn how to do what Jesus said. What did he say? “Take my yoke. Learn from me for I am humble and gentle in spirit, and you will find rest for your souls.”

Now, why could He rest? Why did He rest? I mean, He rested knowing that things weren’t gonna be always pleasant, but He understood, I am part of a purpose that was begotten in the mind and the heart and the will of God before the foundation of the world. And this is my place in that. And so, my job is simply to look to Him every day, and show me, to show me what He wants me to do and then to do it.

And when I see things that are distressing, I can certainly talk to Him about it, but I’m not to sit here and be (mimics anger), everything’s all gone to hell in a hand basket. God, I don’t know what’s going on. Where are you? He’s right there. And He’s the one who’s able to take us through all the ups and downs and hurts, and everything that happens in this life and help us to live a life of purpose, of value. You are valuable to Him, you matter.

Do you think He has designed this grand scheme, and He’s already determined what’s gonna happen in every nation? Do you think the One who sees the sparrow fall doesn’t have a plan for our lives? Do you really think He doesn’t have one? That His plan is to call missionaries to lay down their lives and everybody else is just supposed to go marry whom they will, choose whatever career they want, live where they want, come and go as they please?

Every one of us needs to just lay down our will and say, Lord, I am yours. Show me the issues of my life, and the things that cause me anxiety and fear, help me just to lay them at your feet and say, Lord, you’ve got this. You are my God; Jesus is my savior. My hope is in you, it’s never in me. I may not understand, but I know that in all things you are working not for my evil, but for my good. Not for my hurt, but for my good. And it’s because You have called me according to Your purpose.

Is His purpose worth living for? Is there anything worth living for in this world, but His purpose? No, absolutely not. And I pray that God will bring us to a place where we are so confident of who we are in Him, not because of us. We’re confident of His purpose, the certainty of it, who we are. Our identity comes not from what people say, and do to us and circumstances of life, it comes from who He says I am. I’m His beloved child. He loves me. He’s called me according to His purpose.

It doesn’t matter. He doesn’t choose the important people of the world, to accomplish His purposes, He chooses the things that are not to bring to nothing things that are. Isn’t that what Paul said in 1 Corinthians one? We don’t have to be something in the eyes of people, we can be just as long as we’re His and we can know that we’re loved. We can have a rest that transcends what people say, and how they act and how they treat us ‘cause we know we have a rest.

You think Jesus went around upset, and anxious at all the things that happened around Him? How dare they say that? Don’t they know who I am? I’m tired of that, if you say one more thing…. See, we understand that’s not how He was, but doesn’t He want us to learn from that and say, we don’t have to be that way either. We can live our lives with a sense of holy expectation, but yet with a sense of patience, knowing that the things God wants to accomplish in us do take time.

And many times the things that stop us from being able to enter into things in Him are the issues of our lives that He has to stop and deal with. And so even if He gives us a vision and a sense, oh I want you to be all members of the body of Christ, that’s who you are. I want you to have the gifts, We don’t have to be anxious about that. We just start where we’re at and say, Lord, I’m in your hands. Let me just take one day at a time and look to You and just walk through this day with You. And if there’s something I need to know, I’m trusting You to show me. I can’t figure this out and I don’t have to, it’s not my job. Not my job to….

And of course a lot of us have a real problem being fixits. We see something we perceive to be a need, something wrong or something may even be good, we wanna see something happen. We wanna see somebody change and so we’re gonna jump in there and “help God out.” How did that work for Peter? That was his nature, wasn’t it? But we’re all like that. And that’s why Jesus said to him at the end there, when you were young you dressed yourself, and you went where you wanted to go. But when you’re old, you’ll stretch forth your hands, another’s gonna dress you and carry you where you don’t want to go.

That’s where I want to be. That’s the death by which we glorify Him. We’re dying to what we would be naturally in this world, but we’re embracing a life that will never end. You know, the world will look at you and tell you you’re a fool. I often think back to Jim Elliot, gifted young man, come through university training, everybody expected him to be really somebody in the world. He had what it took. And God called him to be a missionary to savage people in an out-of-the-way jungle in South America.

And his friends thought he was a fool. And so, he wrote in his journal, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” Oh, do we need God’s perspective on life? On the decisions young people are making right now, this isn’t just for you, but it is for you. You’re at the cusp of your life, God has a purpose in who you are, where you’re going, who you marry, what you do.

He’s already designed a life for you that is meaningful. It may not be what you think of it naturally as something you want, but I’ll guarantee when we get to the other end, we’re gonna say, thank you, Lord. Thank you for delivering from me, thank you for delivering from my purposes. I thought this would make me happy, and I got there and it didn’t and all I did was make a mess.

God wants us to learn from Him and say, Lord help me to live the life You have designed for me right now today to realize that I can live that life and not this other one that I’ve been trying to live. I don’t have to be afraid, don’t have to be anxious about all these things. Yeah, I can feel that, but I can take it to you immediately, can’t I? I can have that peace that passes all understanding.

God wants His people to have more rest. Do you have rest today about the issues of your life? Are you at rest or is there something that’s just, I gotta fix this, I gotta change that? Oh, I’m worried about this, I’m worried about that. God wants us to cast all our cares upon Him, why? Why should we do that? Who’s He? He doesn’t care.

Yes, He cares. Yes, He cares. He cares about you right now this morning, every single one of you He loves us with a love we cannot imagine. He has plans for us that we cannot imagine. But those plans aren’t just something way out there, they’re right here. They’re this afternoon, they’re tomorrow morning, they’re this week.

What God has, the purpose for my life and everybody’s individual. You can’t make patterns out of this and formulas out of it. It’s a matter of learning to walk with Him, but to believe Him. Do you really believe this is true of you right now here today? Do you see how important chapter one is? If we don’t see ourselves there, my God that is the place to start. You better cry out to God and say, Lord, help me, open my eyes. I can’t figure this out, but You’re gonna have to show me. You’re gonna have to reveal yourself to me.

And I’ll tell you, He will. If there’s anything in your heart, and if there’s anything in your heart that wants that, you better remember that didn’t come from you that came from Him, that was grace. That’s grace at work to even give us the inclination to want God, to be interested in Him at all. Oh, how merciful and faithful God is. But I’ll tell you God has a specific plan for your life marked out.

You look through the scriptures and you see Moses, and David and Jeremiah the prophet, you know I chose you from the womb to be a prophet of the nations. You say what? I dunno what God’s purpose is. It isn’t necessarily some grand thing in the eyes of men, but if it’s your place, nobody else in the history of this planet can fill it. I wanna fill the place that He’s called me to be.

If it’s to be the doorkeeper in the house of the Lord, isn’t that what David said? I’d rather be that than anything. Dwell in the tents of wickedness. There’s nothing in this world that is worth anything, but this is the thing God wants you to understand. The God who has planned everything in the beginning has also planned a life out for you. All the details of your life, He’s already planned and worked them out.

All he wants you to do is to let go and find that place of peace and surrender where you’re looking to him to step by step make you into who He wants you to be and lead you safely to that day when He can say, this is what I’ve been doing, here they are grown up, they’re ready. He’s the only one that can do that.

To Him who’s able to do more than we could ask, or imagine according to His power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church throughout all the ages, praise God, praise God!

So that’s the thing, where are you with respect to this simple truth? Do you realize who you are in Him? Do you realize that He has a specific plan for your life? Is that the one you want? Are you willing to look to Him and say, God, I need you to show me. Show me today and help me to be patient with it. Help me to be at rest. Help me just to look to you and I tell you God is gonna bring all of His children through and finish what He started. Thank the Lord!

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