Whether you’re planning an event, starting a business, or creating a new ministry, it can be easy to become bogged down in the details and logistics. Many a time have I cried over a task list or calendar!
The Lord places big dreams on our hearts and it can feel so overwhelming when you think of what exactly you’re trying to accomplish. Reach a generation! Start a new church?! Create a business from thin air? Feelings of inadequacy are quick to fester in our spirits and next thing you know, we’re setting aside those big dreams or we’re reverting to what we know rather than what the Lord has placed on our hearts, because it seems too much and we just can’t.
But the Lord himself is a creator, in fact He’s the Ultimate Creator! By studying how our Heavenly Father works and operates, we can begin to see a structure that will help us wade through all of those details and successfully accomplish what He has placed on our hearts!
Look at the Creation story in Genesis. This is a fantastic example of strategic planning that we can easily adapt to our lives today:
- The Lord creates the Heavens and the Earth. (Gen. 1:1-2)
This is the basic structure, the blank canvas if you will. This would be the “big picture” that you are trying to create, whatever that may be. Here is where you sit down and ask God, “What is it you truly want me to accomplish? What is the goal?” Always start with prayer, seeking the Father’s guidance, no matter what the project is. You can’t do the Father’s will if you don’t know the Father, and a dream will not truly be successful unless it is from the Father!
- The Lord creates Light and Dark, Waters, Sky, and Land (Gen1:3-10)
Here God takes that huge idea and separates it into bite size pieces. These would be the major components of your project. You may have 2 major components, or 10. Either way, write out the “big ideas” that would accomplish your dream.
- The Lord creates Vegetation and Animals (Gen 1:11-13;20-23)
This is where the Lord begins to work on the details. He creates inhabitants for each of His major components so that every area has detail and structure, and he does this systematically! He doesn’t just say, “OK animals, be!” He focuses on each area and calls into being specific animals and plants for that section. This is a great example to follow in our own projects. By separating out each piece of the puzzle and focusing one piece at a time, you can handle all of the details much more successfully. You may also have to rank the areas in order of importance. For example, you don’t want to drown in color schemes for your new Kid’s ministry before you have thought through your ministry model!
- The Lord creates Sun and Moon (Gen 1:14-19)
This is one of my very favorite sections, and one that I think we can really learn from. By creating the sun and the moon, God allowed His creation to be self-sustainable. He didn’t have to keep creating new plants and animals! The plants grew by photosynthesis, and the animals were able to survive by eating the plants and reproducing. What a beautiful circle!
In our own projects, we have to create systems that do not solely rely on the leader but can function successfully on their own, with guidance and vision from the leader! This system is further enforced by the final addition to Creation…
- The Lord creates Man and Woman (Gen. 1:26-31)
God empowered his creation to be leaders! He gave Adam and Eve dominion over His creation, to tend to and protect and cultivate in relationship with Him. It was a team effort! Now our projects differ slightly here, simply because we need relationship to function successfully. God did not need us; but we need Him! For our dreams and projects to be successful, we must accept our dependence and reliance on our Heavenly Father. You feel inadequate because you’re trying to do everything yourself! God did not give us these dreams and projects to carry out alone. We must first rely on the Creator to direct and guide our vision, and then we must create a team of leadership to continue that vision!
If you have a dream that God has placed on your heart or a project that you are feeling overwhelmed by I encourage you to sit down, and using the Creation structure, plan out your project. From the basic structure, to the small details, organize the entire plan! You can use generic terms and add in more detail as you go, but this system will help you see what to focus on first and what to set aside for later. But before you begin your planning, pray for God’s wisdom in your project. Acknowledge His rightful place as Director over your life, and give the Holy Spirit the power to guide you!
Kaleigh is a graduate of Southwestern Christian University and a born-and-bred Oklahoman. Since 2011 Kaleigh has worked in the Discipleship Ministries Department of the IPHC, specifically in Student Ministries. Her areas of expertise include graphic design, social media marketing, writing, promotional design, typography, and event planning. Kaleigh currently occupies the Logistics and Communications Portfolio under the Student Ministries Advisory Team.