Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Randomness of the Plan

Seems like a lifetime ago that I last blogged. So much has happened in the last year,it's hard to come up with anything profound to say. And today is not an exception. Just some thoughts.
Planning is important. I've taken the graduate courses. I've been in the meetings. I've been on the committees. My head spins with Strategic Management, Master Plans, and Action Plans. Any organization must give thought to the direction and vision of the team, church, staff, or institution. Having worked in the field of education, I've also seen universities almost get completely bogged down....with planning. So much planning takes place that nothing ever gets done.
Corporations must plan to determine exactly how they will function. Oftentimes, those who lead corporations also lead the church. They decide that the church is run just like the corporation. May I make two observations? First, the church is not a corporation. Jesus never intended for us to run the church like a well-oiled corporation. Don't misunderstand me. I didn't say planning was wrong or misguided. I just said the church doesn't run like a corporation. You see, God is in control of the church. Corporations tend to make plans on the things they know. But the church goes on by faith. Second, sometimes we get so bogged down in our "church" plans that we miss the randomness life. Let me explain.
Remember when Jesus was on His way to heal Jairus' daughter, a woman who had been bleeding for twelve years came up and touched the hem of His robe. Jesus stopped and commended the woman for her faithfulness even though time was of the essence. Even though there was a crowd. Even though she was healed and He really didn't need to stop. In the randomness of the moment, Jesus stopped and encouraged. It wasn't in the day's plan. But it was a blip of the day.
How often do those moments come into our lives? We have the day scheduled. We have a breakfast meeting with one of the deacons. Staff meeting is first thing once we're in the office. Lunch is eaten on the run. There are hospital visits in the afternoon. Someone comes by your office without an appointment. A phone call comes at a really inconvenient time. It's not on the agenda. It's not in the plan. But you can rest assured, it's important.
May I encourage you to let the randomness of the day allow you to serve God mightily. In the smile that you give. The kindness you pass out. The encouragement shown to that "interruption" in your plan. That's God's work. Pray for those moments. Allow them to be a blessing and not a disturbance. Treat them as if they were Jesus. After all, isn't that what Jesus said we do when we visit the sick, feed the poor, and clothe those who are naked? That interruption just may be a visit from Jesus. Have a great day. JW