Prepare, not Plan

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“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” ~ Matthew 6:33-34 (NIV)

Each time I read this verse, I am encouraged to not think so stressfully about my future and to put it in God’s hands. But after a few seconds or the next day, I forget. I think about where I should study for grad school, what I should study, what job I should get when I go back home after my contract finishes, and on and on, never ending worries. I stay up late almost every night on the computer searching for answers. I don’t even bother praying or asking for prayer. These days I’m especially finding it harder and harder to trust in God about my future. I will be going home after finishing my time in Korea and I am both happy and sad about it. And although this is what God has planned, it is difficult to not worry. It’s part of my personality to plan so that I’m ready for what’s to come.

Just a few days ago, I remembered a conversation I had with God over a year ago. I could not sleep that night so I stayed up arguing with God as to why I had not figured out my future after graduating college. I had so many plans I wanted to complete but nothing was coming into place. I knew at the time that I wanted to go back to Korea, but I also wanted to go to grad school. And then, I realized that God had been telling me to prepare, not plan. Preparing could have been to take advantage of the time I had with my family before I came to Korea or studying the Korean language. Or better yet, strengthening my relationship with God.

Ephesians 5:15-17 says, “Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is” (NIV). So much evil passes us when we are too focused on the future. In those times of worrying over the future, we lose sight of who God really is. While we are jumping up and down thirsting for an answer, God is telling us to relax and wait. So now that I know this, I’m making the most of my time, right? Absolutely not.

As I teach my students at my academy, I am not focusing on my students but instead thinking about what I should eat during my break. Or, when I am playing guitar in church, I am thinking if I will do this back home or if I can find a church like this one back home. My mind is distracted, and I’m still learning to not think so much about my future. But now, as I’m writing this, I’m feeling hopeful and gaining some clarity. I have no idea what I will do back home regarding a job or where I will live. But there is no need for me to think about that. God has it all taken care of.

~Mariana

How do you prepare for what God wants you to do? As always, we love hearing from you!

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