Bible Reference: James 4:14; Proverbs 16:1-3; Psalm 33:1

This article first appeared in our 2013 fall newsletter.

I’m new here on staff at MWSB and as I’ve been thinking of what to write for the newsletter devotional, I have to admit it’s felt a little daunting. I can only share what God’s been teaching me recently and I hope and pray it might encourage you.

It has been just over 15 years since graduating from MWSB and it is amazing just how fast time flies by. Besides two trips back over the years to the Dearborn Canyon and a handful of vivid “M-Dub Dreams”, it is hard to believe that MWSB is now “home” for my family, a place where, for many of us, our personal journey with the Lord started.

In the big picture, life is short. The Bible reminds us that all of our plans and schemes amount to a little more than a mist or vapor when held up against the backdrop of eternity. James 4:14 says, “Why you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are little more than a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” (NIV)

This passage of scripture came to life for me this last year while working as a US Park Ranger at Sequoia National Park. It was a secure, comfortable job that God had blessed me with and I wasn’t planning on going anywhere too soon. As far as I was concerned, I was set for the next 25 years in the Park Service. One foggy September morning while driving my patrol vehicle up the park highway the Lord asked me in my heart, “Really Matt?…The next 25 years?” That little question and prompting by the Holy Spirit got me thinking that all I had thus far in life had been provided by Him. I felt a strong urge that day to re-commit and re-align my plans with His.

In the big picture, life is short. The Bible reminds us that all of our plans and schemes amount to a little more than a mist or vapor when held up against the backdrop of eternity.

To humans belong the plans of the heart, but from the Lord comes the proper answer of the tongue. All a person’s ways seem pure to them, but motives are weighed by the Lord. Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans. (Proverbs 16:1-3, NIV)

That evening, I shared with Nicole. We poured out our hearts before the Lord on the living room rug that night. We prayed specifically for renewed direction, we even told Him we were open to something completely different, like being used in a camp ministry. We felt a new peace after that night and continued on from there with what was at hand in our lives. Little did I know that five months later the Lord would ask me if I was really ready to follow His new direction.

In March, I received a phone call that at the time seemed “out of the blue.” It was Adam Jordan, the current director at C-N. After some small talk, it dawned on me; “why was he calling?” He explained that as they had been praying and asking God for new staff our names had come to mind, specifically to help with the summer programming and camps.

Coming on staff at C-N has been one of the biggest decisions of my life so far as it has felt like “leaving it all behind” to follow Him. By the worlds standards it might seem foolish. I can’t say it has been completely easy, but I can say that God has continued to teach us and meet us with peace as we follow step by step.

I hope to encourage you today to consider committing your plans to the Lord. This could be in your family, your job, your church or any circumstances He has set before you. It might mean a small change of direction in life or a big one. Life here is short, but His plans are eternal.

But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations. (Psalm 33:1, NIV)

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Matt Hendrickson

Matt Hendrickson is a former staff member at C Bar N/MWSB Ministries. He is married to Nicole and they have two daughters, Lily and Hazel.