One of the things to which I subscribe on Facebook is a site advertised as a local garage sale. Once you’ve gotten it set up, it lets you know when new items are posted. Recently, I saw something I never guessed I’d see there—an engagement ring.
There were pictures of it, and it looked like a pretty good one. I wasn’t sure whether to chuckle or be sad. How does an engagement ring end up in a garage sale? I suppose, once that kind of relationship is over, you have to get rid of the ring somehow.
“We could have done things a tad differently.”
It’s just another reminder of how things don’t always work out like we thought they would. I’m sure it’s no secret to any of you that life is full of adventures that sometimes go awry. With the derailed ventures, we often collect collateral damages—broken relationships, nicks and scars, and bruised egos. That’s just how life works.
Sometimes we look back and think we could have done things a tad differently. We could have made better decisions or treated people a little more nicely. Maybe we should have avoided an option that was a bit too easy or a move that was obviously way too self-serving.
On the other hand, many times we just couldn’t see it coming (whatever it may have been). We go over and over things in our minds and don’t see anything we could (or would) have done any differently. Things just don’t always go our way. “The best-laid plans,” and all that…
“I know the plans I have for you…”
If you’re a Christian, at least you’ve got a fallback plan. It’s not your plan or a “Plan B.” It’s the one the Lord has for you. He won’t let you down, and his plan is always the best for you (like it or not).
There’s a famous passage in Jeremiah that 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. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:11-13)
“You are a living testimony…”
Even broken engagements, broken relationships, and broken lives can be mended in God’s plan and in his impeccable timing. There’s always hope, and tomorrow’s always a new day. These, of course, are old cliché’s; but they have survived for a reason. That reason is they’re true.
I suspect many of you are a living testimony to these truths. You’ve survived something you thought would destroy your life. You’ve come through on the other side—not always unscathed, but mostly for the better.
Jeremiah discovered hundreds of years ago that if we sought God out and called on him, his plan for our future could be realized. It’s good to know that hasn’t changed.
It makes me wonder if anyone picked up that ring at the garage sale…
[Dave Zuchelli is a graduate of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and is currently pastor of Smith Chapel in Great Falls, VA.]