A strategy is a plan, method, or series of maneuvers used to obtain a specific goal or result. In the course of our lives, we set plans, methods and maneuvers to achieve the goals we’ve set for ourselves. Whether the goal is to be a doctor or start a business, the first step is likely a plan; a plan to study, prepare for the required exam or draft a business plan, start saving. Regardless of the goal, effective plans must be made, i.e. a strategy. In the same vain, God also has goals for us. He employs various strategies to lead us where He’s planned for us to be.
As Christians, we understand that God has a purpose for us. Though the manifestation of the plan in our lives may bring confusion and not seem as straightforward as we prefer, we have the assurance that, as Romans 8:28 states, that all things will work together for good because we have been called according to God’s purposes. Akin to assembling a puzzle, God is still writing the story and putting the pieces of the puzzle together.
Bible highlights many instances where God’s strategy leads to revelation, victory, and blessings in the lives of His people. Joseph, once the favored of his father, the slave, the prisoner, then Egypt’s second in command embodies God’s strategy at work. God’s goal was to send a man ahead into Egypt. (Psalm 105:17) God had many avenues to get Joseph into Egypt in preparation for what was to come; however, even before Joseph’s birth, God’s strategy was in effect. In Genesis 29, scriptures states God shut Rachel’s womb and so causes Joseph to be born when Jacob is in his old age. Genesis 37 recounts Joseph’s life at 17 years old; given the order of his birth, Joseph is most favored among his brothers, because he was born to his father in his old age by his father’s most beloved wife. Joseph’s favor culminated in His brothers selling him into slavery in Egypt. What his brothers thought would lead to his demise was perfect for God’s plans. In Genesis 50:20, Joseph said, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” For Joseph to be the man that God called him to be, to have the boldness to make the statement narrated in Genesis 50:20, his momentary suffering was necessary.
God’s strategy does not always make sense; in fact, it often defies convention or what we would deem logical. We see this with the Israelites after God promised to deliver them out of Egypt and into the promise land. The Israelites finally arrived in the land but had to work to possess the land; yet, they had no plan. God, however, was already ahead of them had given Joshua instructions on how to conquer the enemy (Joshua 6:1-5). The plan, to march around the fortified city with musical instruments, rather than weapons of war, likely made no sense to them. Their obedience to God’s instruction, adhering to his strategy brought forth victory for the Israelites. Despite how senseless God’s instructions may seem, obedience to His instructions is key if we want to see God’s plans manifest.
God’s uncanny strategy is again employed in Judges 7 when he instructs Gideon to prepare for war with the Midianites. Rather than march in with troops upwards of the thousands, God instructs Gideon to proceed to war with merely 300 men. Odd as the instruction was, God delivered the Midianites into the hand of Gideon and his men. God’s strategy may cause you to question and doubt, but you must trust His leading. We may not like what He says, but if we truly want Him to step into the matter, we must allow Him to lead and follow His strategy.
Just as God spoke to Joshua and Gideon and worked in Joseph’s life, He is speaking to you. Allow God to finish His instructions to you; let him finish talking to you. In 1 Samuel 16:1-3, God instructs Samuel to anoint a king from among the sons of Jesse. While God was still speaking, Samuel interjected, “But Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.” We sometimes, preempt God; before the plan has fully manifested, we intercept. Wait for God! Let the plans unfold, don’t interject.
We know that His ways are not only higher than our ways, but they are mysterious. God does not call for our understanding, He calls for our obedience. It’s not a straightforward story; we should expect that there will be highs and lows, mountains and valleys, hell and high water!
As we go through this week let us be reminded that despite how the current circumstances may seem, it is part of God’s strategy. God has us, he has our back; His plan is not to disgrace us, but to get us to the expected end, such that all who look upon us will know that it was God.
It’s a strategy.