Jonathan's Perspective  

Oct 15

'Big Plans'

Have you ever wondered what plans God has for your life? Sometimes there is no sense of direction and we are just staying afloat. We hold back and hesitate to be an encourager that talks about God’s work in our lives. It is much safer to pray ‘for’ a friend or colleague rather than ‘with’ that person. What are God’s plans for our lives? Surely, God’s plans are bigger than what we are experiencing now.

This is not the first or last time in history that the people of God have felt this way. Many Israelites were in a foreign land from 600 BC to 530 BC. The Babylonian army swept through Israel taking the best and the brightest to the heart of the evil empire. They felt abandoned by God and were struggling to hold on to their identity as the people of God. But God had bigger plans than hunkering down. God told them, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jer. 29:11)  God told the exiles that He would bless them and they were to live that blessing in two ways.

First, we are to work to build up Metairie. God told the exiles, “seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile.” (Jer 29:7) They were told to bless the evil empire by praying for peace and working for its prosperity. We are in a similar situation. Paul puts it this way: “We are foreigners and aliens in a strange land.” (Heb. 11:13) God has placed us here to bless the Metairie area. We are called to look for opportunities to bring peace and to help our families, colleagues, and community flourish. Just like the Israelites were called to bless the Babylonians, we are called to bless Metairie. We have been put here to help Metairie flourish. In blessing others, God will bless us.

Second, we are to pray that we will see and do what God wants to do in Metairie. Every Sunday we pray, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” It is not our will that we are trying to impose on the community; our ideas, our desires are way too small in the Kingdom of God. “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer 29:13) Pray for the newly elected and re-elected local leadership. Pray for businesses to operate with integrity, for nonprofits to draw our community together, pray for our schools, teachers, and other public servants. We are responsible for our part, then God will magnify our efforts in ways we cannot imagine. Only when God breaks in will deep change happen, will our community flourish. 

Bringing peace, prosperity, and the wisdom of God to Metairie is our sacred trust. It is what gives us meaning. This is what we were made for. This is our purpose. Seeking God’s Kingdom in Metairie will help all of us flourish as a community. It will bring people to the Lord.

Seeking His Kingdom, 

Jonathan

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