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Lent 2011

God's Plan

Day 11

By by Linda J. DuRant, president, South Carolina Conference United Methodist Women

Listen to me, my people, and give heed to me, my nation; for a teaching will go out from me, and my justice for a light to the peoples. I will bring near my deliverance swiftly, my salvation has gone out and my arms will rule the peoples; the coastlands wait for me, and for my arm they hope. Lift up your eyes to the heavens, and look at the earth beneath; for the heavens will vanish like smoke, the earth will wear out like a garment, and those who live on it will die like gnats; but my salvation will be for ever, and my deliverance will never be ended. Listen to me, you who know righteousness, you people who have my teaching in your hearts; do not fear the reproach of others, and do not be dismayed when they revile you. For the moth will eat them up like a garment, and the worm will eat them like wool; but my deliverance will be forever, and my salvation to all generations.

—Isaiah 51:4-8

Several years ago, I was asked to serve as the assistant dean of the South Carolina School of Christian Mission. The request came out of the blue, and I asked for a day to think and pray about it.

I had been struggling with what I felt God was calling me to do. I had just finished up two terms in my district as the mission coordinator for spiritual growth and had been nominated for another position on the district, but for various reasons it just didn't work out. After being so involved for four years I felt cut adrift. I felt like God must have had plans for me, but I couldn't seem to connect. I had thought and prayed and asked for guidance, but I still didn't seem to have any clear vision as to my path.

And just like that, the blinders fell off of my eyes and I felt connected and whole again.

Following a plenary one night my roommates and I decided that it was such that we needed some ice cream before we went to bed, and we went to a local ice cream shop. I didn't know either of my roommates very well, but we had gotten close during the school so I shared my dilemma. I told them about being asked to be the assistant dean, about my disappointment with not being able to take the district job, and that I had prayed for God to show me what he had planned for me. One of the two just looked at me and said, "Linda, what do you want? An engraved invitation? Looks to me like God has plans for you to be the assistant dean!"

And just like that, the blinders fell off of my eyes and I felt connected and whole again. God's plan was not one that I would ever have seen for myself, and it stretched me and set me on paths that I would never have dreamed. Faith in God and God's vision is easy to talk about, but it is more difficult to just turn loose and know that wherever God leads us is where we need to go and to be.


Father God, how awesome and infinite you are. How truly wonderful to know that you are always there, even when I don't hear you, and that you always have plans for me, even when I can't see them. Help me to simply trust in your wisdom and to turn my path to follow you each and every day of my life.

Last Updated: 04/16/2014

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