In Proverbs 16:3 we read this: “Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.” It’s a rather simple equation, isn’t it? Pray about it and it will be as you desire. But it isn’t really that simple.
In the Epistle of James, we read that we ought to say, "If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that." (James 4:3). James was building on a theme here. He had already written, “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” (James 4:15).
In other words, what we ask needs to be within God’s Will. What we plan needs to be in God’s Will, as well, in order to get His “stamp of approval.”
Even the Lord Jesus Christ prayed to God, the Father, “Thy will be done.”
Often, we go about our daily lives just planning and doing – without regard to what God may have in mind for us. I’m talking about Christians, not pagans. We make our plans and we don’t even consider consulting with God. But God’s Word teaches us that we are to commit our plans to the Lord. Be ready for Him to change those plans if they are not according to His Will. How often have we heard someone pray that a door be closed if it’s not God’s Will (maybe we have prayed this ourselves)? Did you mean it? Are you willing to be submissive to God’s Will?
In Romans 12:1 we read, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship.” Offering ourselves up to God; that is, being submissive to Him, is an act of worship.
In an earlier age, people were accustomed to using the Latin phrase Deo volente in their speech and correspondence. Often the initials “D.V.” were included in signatures. This means “God willing.” It was indicative of the desire to be in God’s Will. It was a reminder that all of our plans are subject to God’s Will.
I need to be more deliberate in bringing my plans before God. I need to remember that just because I plan something, that doesn’t mean God approves it. I need to be less presumptuous about my life and daily schedule.
Thank you, God, for the reminder.