Today we will look at some words of wisdom James has for those in business and how we should go about making decisions and plans.
13 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.”
James starts this verse with “now listen” which is a way of emphasizing what is to follow. All of God’s Word is important but there are times when the same phrase or verse is repeated or the writer emphasizes a particular verse that is deserving of extra attention. This verse lays out a very clear plan, when and where it is going to take place, how long it will last, the task and the end result. Did you notice what was missing? No where in this verse does it say that God was included in any of this plan.
9 In their hearts humans plan their course,
but the Lord establishes their steps.
There is nothing wrong with making plans, but all of our plans should include inquiring of the Lord. We all make plans every day but if we want to be living out God’s will for our lives, we need to inquire of Him daily to see what He has to say about our plans. This verse explains how we make plans in our hearts, but we need to allow the Lord to establish our steps. In addition when we make our own plans without including the Lord we are forgetting about His provision and the fact that everything we have and everything we are are is because of His grace and provision.
14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.
James is addressing our lack of knowledge about the future and the temporariness of our lives. When we make decisions and plans without inquiring of the Lord, we miss out on His wisdom. Only the Lord knows what will happen tomorrow. He sees the big picture of what is happening in our lives, not just our limited viewpoint. We make plans based on what we know but so often there is more going on that we are not even aware of; and if we were aware it may change the plans we make.
How do you make your decisions and plans? What plans and decisions have you made without inquiring of the Lord? Did you regret it? If we are going to live the lives God created us to live, we must seek Him. We need to seek His wisdom and His guidance. He is all-kowing and sees every part of a situation and can help us make decisions that include aspects from a broader perspective. What plans do you need to run by the Lord before putting into action? What decisions do you need to seek His guidance for today?
- All Scripture references are from http://www.biblegateway.com