Don’t Judge a Plan by Its Cover

by Alice Murray @Dawgatty 

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29.11 (NIV)

The small green lizard perched on the top of a picture frame on my office window ledge. His gaze was focused outside where bushes, trees, and grass beckoned to him. The poor creature had been camping out in my office for a few days. I had originally spotted him on top of my filing cabinet, but he had disappeared behind my computer desk without reappearing until now. His little had was cocked to the side as if he was thinking, “I can see where I want to be, but how do I get there?” The lizard’s plight touched my heart, so I resolved to set him free from his office prison.

Cautiously I approached the window and picked up a glass bowl beside the picture frame on which the small creature was sitting. I gently moved the picture frame to knock the lizard down to the ledge where I could trap him under the bowl and take him outside to freedom. My efforts terrified him. His tiny clawed feet skittered around the ledge as he attempted to avoid the large glass object coming down on top of him. Once trapped underneath the bowl, he ran around the edge of the bowl looking for an escape. Gently, I slid a clipboard under the bowl and carried the trapped lizard out the front door of the office where I set him free in the big outdoors he had longingly gazed at out my window.

The poor lizard just did not get it. If he looked up at me as the bowl was descending over him, he saw only a giant bent on doing him harm. But my trapping him did not spell the lizard’s doom. It may not have been pleasant to be under a bowl for a brief time, but his capture allowed the lizard to achieve his greatest dream—to be outside where he was meant to be.

Aren’t we like that poor little lizard? Sometimes God has great things in store for us right up ahead, but we cannot see beyond our difficult circumstances–the scary glass bowl descending from above.

Earlier in my life, I lost a job I really needed to support my family. But because I was trapped in that difficult position, I sought and began the job of my dreams. Once I looked past the descending glass bowl of my job loss, I recognized that the giant placing the bowl over me was my loving Heavenly Father. That bowl was a part of His plan to put me in the position to give me a wonderful future, i.e., a job I longed to have.

Humans tend to focus on the cover of their current circumstances. We need to move beyond that cover and look into the Good Book itself. It assures us that our Heavenly Father is in control and has a plan. He is not bent on doing us harm; He only wants to give us hope and a future even if we cannot see that blessing beyond the glass bowl of our current situation.

Don’t Judge a Plan by Its Cover – Alice H. Murray, @Dawgatty, on @AriseDailyDevo (Click to Tweet)

alice murrayAbout the author: Alice H. Murray is a Florida adoption attorney by profession and a writer by passion. Alice writes a weekly blog at, is a staff writer for, has had her work appear in the compilation Short And Sweet book series (available on, and has been published in a Chicken Soup book. In her “spare” time, Alice volunteer teaches ESL as a church outreach ministry.

Join the conversation: Has there been a time in your life when you could not see past your circumstances? How did God work things out for you?

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