Jeremiah 29:11-13: “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.”

What is the benefit of taking a risk? Gamblers take risks all the time. Gamblers are usually frowned upon because the objective of their risk taking is a mere short cut: in order to make quick money, gamblers take huge risks to avoid the logistics, responsibilities, and accountability of hard work.

Not everybody is a gambler of course, but everybody comes to a crossroads from time to time, where all of us are challenged to make a decision as to which direction we’re going. Let’s say all directions look good. So now we are weighing the unknowns, try to assess the risks involved, go to people who made it through similar situations and ask for some input, in short, we’re performing a risk assessment. I don’t believe the path of least resistance is a very good criteria. As a matter of fact, if the adventure beckons and we are unable to discern all risks involved, we are stepping into foreign territory; people of faith have been there, done just that many, many times before. Interview them in hindsight, and they will tell you, it’s the most rewarding experience! The key is mentioned in the book of Jeremiah where the Lord rather encouragingly says:

“In those days [of your risk assessment] when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.”

How grateful I am that we can find this sort of encouragement in God’s heart for us. God is closest when we’re agonizing about weighty decisions. He listens. And as we look for answers, if we look for the Lord, He assures us that we will find Him – not to give us a microwaved answer to our yet unsolved problems, but to give us peace when we come to a conclusion, and most importantly, He is working with us through the process. I believe this is true preciousness working side-by-side with the Lord on a solution. It’s the grown-up partnership between father and son, as an example, when the son takes over his father’s business, and his father operates in the background – available for input but staying out of directing the business as his son takes over. Parenting evolves into partnership that way.

The maturing relationship between two generations is a sight to behold! I firmly believe that God enjoys our maturing and growing. Shocking as it may seem, I also believe that our exit from Eden has helped mankind’s maturing process significantly along. How else to mature other than making decisions and bear the consequences, including pain? How else become compassionate if we have not suffered yet?

If you are going through some major changes and have some tough decisions to make, be encouraged! I can’t think of a better resource than God. Remember: Looking up won’t bring you down. You will find Him if you look for Him. In fact, God wants to be found! Be prepared to get more deeply connected with Him and reap all the benefits, even though some real challenges may come your way – because God is in it for good! Think about it: what good would it be if He wasn’t? God’s very essence is love, so you can rest assured that He’s in it for good, all the way!

“When somebody loves you
It’s no good unless he loves you all the way
Happy to be near you
When you need someone to cheer you all the way”
      Frank Sinatra

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