The human mind plans the way, but the Lord directs the steps. Proverbs 16:9 NRSV
When our granddaughter, Blair, first began to walk, we would hold her little hands and walk behind her. We fondly remember Nana walking with her as Papa recorded the event. While Blair could walk, she needed help guiding her steps and keeping her safe. Now she moves about unassisted, which introduces a new level of concern for anyone watching her as she moves quickly from place to place.
I wonder if that's how God feels. He has given us a reason and the freedom to make plans, but as the ever-vigilant Parent, he observes as we make our choices. So while we are given time and space to learn, including stumbling, our loving Parent also desires to be involved. However, he wants us to want him., to choose his participation. Then when we need assistance, he lifts us when we fall, and when we lose direction, he sets us on the right path.
The problem arises when our stubbornness keeps us from asking for and accepting our loving Parent's help. Instead, we allow our independence to work toward our determent, charging headlong into dangerous situations. Often the result is ending up in a precarious place, then calling on God to bail us out.
The alternative is to allow God to direct our paths from the beginning. We needn't relinquish our freedom; by seeking his counsel, we achieve certainty in that freedom. We have the assurance our plans will succeed because what we desire is consistent with that of the Parent.
Father, thank you for your continual care and love. Open our ears to listen and our hearts to change the plans we offer to you today. Where our desire differs from your will, give us the courage to scrap them if necessary and start over with your direction. Bless us so that whatever we do will be for your glory. Amen.