Thursday, April 9, 2009

Better to know the Planner than the plan

There are a lot of tough times right now. The economy is stretching our donors. Our expenses are increasing because people have to raise prices to make a living. I’ve had to spend a lot of time thinking about numbers – spreadsheets, balance sheets, profit and loss statements.

I’ve also spent a lot of time in the last few months trying to get our staff working within their passions, giving them the ability to make decisions and control their world so that they are not just coming to work; they are living to be what God has called them to be. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about our purpose, our reason for being, our focus.

We’re developing a strategic plan to help us through these strategic times. But something has bothered me. Something is missing. It seems to me that we can rely so much on the upturn in the economy in our strategic plan that we forget that God is in charge. We forget that we’re not owners of our ministry. We may be shareholders and have a serious stake in what goes on, but we work for the owner, and the owner is God.

I was reading this morning from the Confessions of St. Augustine. There’s a section that really stuck out to me. As you read through this, think about our current economic times:

After all, who is better placed-the person who owns a tree and gives You thanks for all the good things it provides; or the one who owns a similar tree and knows its weight and dimensions down to the least leaf, but does not realize that You are its Creator and that it is through You that he or she has the use of it? In essence, the latter person is ignorant, though full of facts, and the former person wise, though a bit short on details.

So in general we can say that the most important knowledge is knowledge of You, O Lord. A person who has that, as Paul said, "possesses nothing yet owns everything." We may not know the course of the [stars] through the sky, we may not be able to analyze chemical elements nor measure continents, but we can know You, our Creator and God, who plots the courses of the stars, creates the elements and shapes the land and sky and sea.
Better to know the Planner than the Plan.

I believe that our mission (and Ridge) need to be focused on understanding the Planner, not just the plan. And when we know Him and hear His voice and we abide in Christ, the Planner, the plan becomes obvious. I encourage – no, implore –our mission to focus on the Planner.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this thought from St Augustine. It has really encouraged me.


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