The Best Laid Plans by James R. Coggins

First in a Series

The Old Testament book of Ruth begins with this statement: “In the days when the judges ruled, there was a famine in the land. So a man from Bethlehem in Judah, together with his wife and two sons, went to live for a while in the country of Moab.  And the name of the man was Elimelech.” Elimelech’s actions are not unique in history. Since the beginning of time, human beings have been migrating to new places to find a better life. Elimelech moved his family to another country in order to save them from starvation. He thought it would be a good move. But things did not turn out as he expected. He and his two sons died and, and his wife was left impoverished.

In the New Testament, James reminded his readers of the uncertainty of life and our inability to control or even predict events: “Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’ As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil” (James 4:13-16).

The uncertainty of life is also one of the main themes of the Old Testament book of Ecclesiastes. And the book of Proverbs says, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails” (Proverbs 19:21) and “In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps” (Proverbs 16:9). The solution, Proverbs suggests, is to consult with God first since He knows and controls the future: “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans” (Proverbs 16:3).

About jrcoggins

James R. Coggins is a professional writer and editor based in British Columbia, Canada. He wrote his first novel in high school, but, fortunately for his later reputation as a writer, it was never published. He briefly served as a Christian magazine editor (for just over 20 years). He has written everything from scholarly and encyclopedia articles to jokes in Reader’s Digest (the jokes paid better). His six and a half published books include four John Smyth murder mysteries and one other, stand-alone novel. In his spare time, he operates Mill Lake Books, a small publishing imprint. His website is
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1 Response to The Best Laid Plans by James R. Coggins

  1. Patricia Mussolum says:

    How true is this!! Thankyou!!


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