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My Plans Failed
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“Often our plans fail that God's plans for us may succeed.”1

You know that moment when life suddenly disposes of all of your preconceived ideas, and doesn’t consult your carefully laid plans? I was 22 years old when my little world seemed turned upside down. My plans failed. Someone broke my heart. My dream job fell through. I was hurt, confused, and afraid.

My mind seemed to taunt me with the words “This is your life…is it everything you dreamed it would be?” All I could do was look at it and realize it was everything that I thought it would never be. I just couldn’t figure out why.

From the middle of this mess of broken dreams, failed plans and the deep wounds of my heart, I felt like a failure. I felt like everything I’d spent my life building was gone. I’d thought that I was following God’s plan. I couldn’t understand why what I had meant to be for good, could turn out so wrong. I couldn’t understand from the middle of this pain, that this moment of failure was exactly what I needed. I’d been trying to do the right things, but I’d wanted it to go the way that I planned it. In my limited view on life, I had unintentionally tried to push God’s plans into my own mold.

Complete Abandon for God

With great mercy, God let it all crash so that I could learn that my dreams were the very thing keeping me from what I wanted most—to live a life of complete abandon for God. I thought I understood God’s plan. In reality, I caught a glimpse and I ran with it in my own way.

How often we may think we understand a little of The Plan, only to rush God’s time, selfishly bringing pain and needless sorrows to others and ourselves — and at some point, marring the beauty of the good thing that God was doing.

I never could have imagined that the failure of my plans would mean the fulfillment of my deepest dreams—not then. Looking back, I see that this is exactly what happened. When my plans shattered, God used the broken pieces to rebuild a life for me that was blessed beyond measure. God gave me the purpose and passion I longed for, the love I needed, and filled this different-from-my-plans life with so much good, and so much beauty.

Tomorrow, next week, a month from now or maybe even years from now, my plans may all fail again. I might find myself wondering “What next?” when the things I think are going to be a part of my future don’t pan out. It will probably hurt a little. Broken dreams always do. But this time, I know that sometimes my plans must fail. It isn’t because God delights in disappointments, but simply because the only success that I truly desire—the success of God’s perfect plan for my life—depends on it. That’s something worth “failing” for.

The Bible says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11).

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By Chantel Brankshire. Copyright © 2012 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.

1 Help in Daily Living by E.G. White, page 470

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