Seven Steps for Godly Planning - Daily Hope with Rick Warren - November 13, 2022

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Seven Steps for Godly Planning
By Rick Warren

“If the Lord wants us to, we will live and carry out our plans.” James 4:15 (GW)

We’ve been looking at Nehemiah’s model for making God-inspired plans. So far, we’ve learned five steps:  

Step 1: Ask God for favor on your life.

Step 2: Prepare for an opportunity, and then wait.

Step 3: Expect fear, but don’t let it stop you.

Step 4: Establish a clear target.

Step 5: Set a deadline.

Here are Nehemiah’s final two steps in developing a life plan.

Step 6: Anticipate barriers.

Part of the planning process involves anticipating problems. Proverbs 27:12 says, “A sensible man watches for problems ahead and prepares to meet them” (TLB).

Nehemiah thought through all the problems he might face. Then he said to the king, “Would you be willing to give me letters to the governors of the provinces west of the Euphrates River, so that I can travel safely to Judah? I will need timber to rebuild the gates of the fortress near the temple and more timber to construct the city wall and to build a place for me to live. And so, I would appreciate a letter to Asaph, who is in charge of the royal forest” (Nehemiah 2:7-8 CEV).

First, Nehemiah asked the king for permission to go to Jerusalem. Then he asked for protection and provision. Nehemiah was a cupbearer, not a professional builder, yet because he had spent four months praying and planning, he was able to anticipate the barriers, determine his needs, and calculate the cost.  

Step 7: Trust God to meet all your needs. 

Even when things don’t turn out the way you hoped, you can still trust God. A mark of spiritual maturity is when you recognize that God's hand is behind the plans that go your way and the plans that don’t go your way. Godly goal setting says, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and carry out our plans” (James 4:15 GW).

The king ended up giving Nehemiah everything he had asked for—and Nehemiah gave God all the credit: “And the king granted these requests, because the gracious hand of God was on me” (Nehemiah 2:8 NLT). Nehemiah didn’t say, “Look at what my planning did.” He said, “Look at what God did.”

What would you like God to do in the next six months, the next year, or the next five years in your life? A great plan starts with these seven steps that Nehemiah followed. Try following them in your own life and see how God works in your life.

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Develop an Attitude of Gratitude—and Change Everything!

If you’ve ever noticed that the more grateful someone is, the happier they are, it’s not a coincidence. Experts have discovered that gratitude reduces stress and leads to greater life satisfaction and overall happiness. It makes you healthier than any other emotion!

The Bible agrees—and God has a lot to say about developing an attitude of gratitude in your life. That’s why Pastor Rick developed a brand-new Bible study called The Power of Gratitude.

Through this innovative new study, you’ll discover how to defeat discouragement, conquer complaining, stay in God’s will, and experience his blessings—as you develop a lifelong habit of expressing your gratitude to God.

Pastor Rick’s new study, The Power of Gratitude, is our thanks for your gift to help Daily Hope take God’s Word to people all around the world, so ask for it when you give below!

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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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