Archive for August, 2018

Change of plan

‘If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.’ Woody Allen

Or to put it another way…

‘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… 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)

There’s nothing wrong with making plans, in itself. Imagine how chaotic life would be if we never planned anything! The problem comes when we assume we know best and start boasting about how amazing our plans are. God may have other ideas, as I’ve found out recently.

I started work on Monday with big ideas of what I was going to achieve during the week, but those ideas were soon scuppered. I work from home, so my normal routines and habits have been disrupted by the presence of my two sons, who are off school for six weeks’ holiday and need feeding, watering, entertaining and transporting to various social engagements! Up until Tuesday evening, I was feeling highly frustrated. It was nigh on impossible to get into the right frame of mind to tackle a significant work task when I was liable to be interrupted at any moment by a small boy demanding a fish finger sandwich. But now I wonder whether God might be in this, somehow. Is it possible that he’s using this disruption to remind me of my more important responsibilities? I believe my work matters, of course. But I also believe God cares more about how I’m doing as a father than how I’m doing as a writer. So I’ve been taking this opportunity to spend time with my kids. I can always work in the evenings, when they’re in bed!

Our friends in Zambia know how it feels to have God disrupt your plans, too. The team at Wukwashi never meant to get involved in Kabompo, a 14-hour drive from their base in Kitwe: their new support group there was the result of a mix-up. Last year, the team had been well on their way to their farthest-flung support group, in Chitokoloki, a good couple of hours further west from Kabompo, when they received a call cancelling the visit. But God showed he had a bigger plan for that trip… and for the children of Kabompo. Aborting their visit to Chitokoloki, the team made their way to Kabompo mission station. There, someone told them about Mr Kayombo, a local man who’d been trying to help children with disabilities but who had neither resources nor support.

‘We’ve been praying for people like you for a long time!’ exclaimed Mr Kayombo when Wukwashi sought him out. Mr Kayombo now heads up a Wukwashi support group for 23 children and their families, with the help of eight volunteers. Wukwashi’s plans were good, but God’s were better.

When our plans don’t turn out quite as we hoped, it’s just possible that God has better ideas. Are we prepared to let God disrupt us and point us in a new and unexpected direction?


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We’re hiring!

The Bethany Children’s Trust is looking for a new Operations Manager. If you want to use your skills and experience to develop and strengthen the operations of a small and dynamic charity working on behalf of marginalised children, you could be just the person we’re looking for.

The successful candidate will have significant, proven experience in:

  • management responsibility within a charity;
  • organisational and team development;
  • policy development and ensuring compliance with GDPR and charity regulations;
  • overseas project development and working cross-culturally;
  • working with marginalised children.

Head on over to our employment opportunities page to find out more.


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