“Most people are bothered by those passages of Scripture they do not understand, but the passages that bother me are those I do understand.” – Mark Twain
Committed to Success
“Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed” (Proverbs 16:3-Amplified).
I don’t know about you, but not everything I’ve done has been a success. Even those things I’ve given over to God have not always met with the kind of success I’ve hoped for. Only after digging into Proverbs 16:3 did I begin to understand what God was up to.
I first memorized this Scripture from the NIV, which tells me to “commit” my plans to the Lord. But when I found the same word is translated “roll” in the Amplified, I began a study of the word. In the Hebrew, the word commit does mean roll, but it also means to move a stone by getting it out of the way, to roll in blood or to be dyed red. Now I was really on a roll (pun intended).
This tells me that every plan I have must be in conjunction with the will of God, according to the price paid by the blood of Jesus, if my plans are going to succeed. This is why every selfish, vain, prideful plan I’ve had has failed. Even if I rolled my plans into the clothes of religious terminology (“I declare, in Jesus name, to take control over the devil’s schemes so the gates of hell will not prevail against it, for the glory of God Amen”), the plan will fail if it is not a plan that glorifies God.
Furthermore, I’m still discovering I cannot commit something to God if I am not willing to let it go. It is impossible to roll a bowling ball down the lane if you refuse to let it go. Too often, I have been guilty of “committing” my plans to God, only to keep one hand on the plan and try to steer the direction it will take. But that is not how it works. 1 Peter 5:7 says we should “cast” all our cares upon Jesus. This word cast was also used for the way people cast their garments upon the donkey Jesus used to ride into Jerusalem. Once they cast them for Jesus’ use, they had to trust Jesus would take them to the place that served Him best.
How often have I truly cast my cares upon Jesus, rolling them up and handing them over to Him so He may make them successful? I think sometimes He takes our plans and puts them on a shelf, knowing that those plans would do us more harm than good, and the only successful way of dealing with our ideas is by saying “No.”
I also think this has something to do with the way we forgive. (Didn’t see that transition coming, did you?). Too often I have said I’ve forgiven someone who has offended me, only to treat them as if they owed me something, or held the offense over their head, or allowed bitterness or skepticism to enter the relationship. But if I truly commit, roll and move the stone of unforgiveness out of the way, then I’ll carry on the relationship in a manner that exhorts the other person and honors God. And wouldn’t that be a marvelous way to live?