You Can’t Plan Life

Picture illustrating someone writing in a planner to plan life

The devo below from “Jesus Calling” reminds me of advice my mom gave me so many times. “Carmen, you can’t plan life. No matter how hard you try.” Y’all, I try hard. Way too hard. Mom and I had different personalities. She was not a planner, and it served her well…most of the time. 

I am learning to trust more. I want to stop the craziness of strategizing (and visualizing) every negative impact to mitigate it. I. Me. What in the whirl? Fear. Pride. Arrogance. Distrust. I’m still working with the Holy Spirit to sort it out. I am so thankful that in Jesus, there is no condemnation. He loves, corrects, forgives, empowers, leads, and loves some more. He knows our hearts. It’s all about our heart.

So, if you are like me and keep struggling with some hard stuff, remember that Jesus sets us free to stay free. He has committed Himself to help us. We do not carry this burden alone.

“I am convinced and confident of this very thing, that he who has begun a good work in you [will continue to] perfect and complete it until the day of Christ Jesus [the time of his return]. Philippians 1:6, AMP

“God is working in you to make you willing and able to obey him.” Philippians 2:13, CEV

Friend, that’s shouting grounds, right there! God is working in us to grow us, and He ain’t givin’ up. 

Through it all, through it all
I’ve learned to trust in Jesus
I’ve learned to trust in God
Through it all, through it all
I’ve learned to depend upon his word. ~ Ray Boltz “Through it All”

P.S. I have discovered this about all my mitigation measures. When faced with the situation, I usually do something completely different than the plan. Mom was right. We can’t plan life.

September 17

YOU WILL NOT FIND MY PEACE by engaging in excessive planning, attempting to control what will happen to you in the future. That is a commonly practiced form of unbelief. When your mind spins with multiple plans, Peace may sometimes seem to be within your grasp; yet it always eludes you. Just when you think you have prepared for all possibilities, something unexpected pops up and throws things into confusion.

I did not design the human mind to figure out the future. That is beyond your capability. I crafted your mind for continual communication with Me. Bring Me all your needs, your hopes, and fears. Commit everything into My care. Turn from the path of planning to the path of Peace.

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 

—1 Peter 5:6–7
In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps. 
—Proverbs 16:9
Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass. 
—Psalm 37:5 nkjv


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  1. Thank you Carmen I learned as a child not to plan. I was wearing my rose color glasses at a young age. Hoping there was something like my friends home waiting for me! I was a wanderer. Some one introduced me to Jesus and I sat my glasses down. I may not understand alot about life but walking with Jesus I realize He alone understands! Learning to trust Jesus for me has its hills and valleys! Lessons are not always easy! I still don’t plan! I walk out my door and ask Jesus to give me opportunity. I want to share who Jesus is to who He places in my path! When I was stumbling on my crooked path I met someone who introduced me to a Wonderful God! Thank for the reminder that stirred my spirit! Blessings!

  2. Thank you Carmen for reaffirming what I have known but sometimes tend to forget. If nothing is learned from 2020 this message will sustain us. I always tried to plan and then manipulate things to make my plans work. Sometimes I would think my momma should have named me Jacob, Although my plans were not to deceive, I would move things around until they worked. Ha Ha Ha…Not on a huge scale but only in my family life but sometimes or most times it is easier to go with the flow…. To enjoy the unexpected.