The Plans I Have for You

(Formerly under the Devotions tab, originally published 2/27/23)

Jeremiah 29:11, “I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope.”

Thank God for this wonderful promise and for the encouragement that we have received from it for centuries! God does have great plans for us! Haven’t we sought peace and hope for the future? How often do we find ourselves in a mess and confused? Am I the only human that has ever wondered how I got into a disaster? Am I alone in feeling shame for sin and guilt for weakness? We all wonder if we have the wrong idea of the Christian existence and the abundant life that a born-again Believer is supposed to be living. Am I a Believer at all?

Upon another reading of chapter 29 we recognize that God was dictating to the prophet Jeremiah a message to preach to the nation Israel. At the time the nation was enduring one of many captivities and occupations. Stop on that fact! The nation that was God’s own elect children where often in captivity and occupied by foreign nations. The foreign nations always represented different cultures which were equipped and anxious to tear away the fabric of the nation that worshipped one God.

As God’s people allowed themselves to get spiritually weaker by adapting, accommodating, making excuses, and gradually changing the rules they set themselves up to become slaves to any surrounding culture that was ready to pounce on them. The children of Israel repeatedly reduced their power to defend against attack and simultaneously lost the ability to launch any campaign to advance the truth of God to the world around them. When Christians think that it is safe to practice things that we know to be contrary to God’s desire, then we gradually become weaker at resisting the harmful influences around us. When Christians decide to indulge in private indiscretion and personal pleasures outside of God’s will their ability to resist lust is diminished. Selfish pleasure, in all of its weaknesses, eats the tree from the roots upward until it topples, destroying itself and often, many things surrounding it.

In Jeremiah 29:1-10 God’s people were captives for seventy years. They had wallowed in their own suffering for decades because they wanted to play with other gods and worship at the temples of “sex and religion”, as the Message paraphrase of the Bible repeatedly calls it through all of Israel’s history. Thus, at verse eleven, God is reminding the people that this was never his wish for them! He says that he had planned peace and not disaster. He wanted them to have hope for the future. This is the promise that God gave in Jeremiah 29:11. Furthermore starting in verse 12, God added a warning that bondage is what will happen when his children lose sight of their God!

So, plans for a future of hope are right in our hands, not in an unconditional promise.

Father, turn your face toward me and open my eyes. Help me to see clearly the secrets of my life so that I may trade them in for your forgiveness. Wash me with the life of Jesus Christ and give me your power to stop giving away my joy, peace, hope, freedom, In Jesus name.

Joe Fabean

*Scripture from Common English Bible translation, 2011

1 thought on “The Plans That I Have for You!”


December 3, 2023 at 3:57AM

I congratulate, a brilliant idea.

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