I’m a list person. If there’s something that I want to do then I make a list about it. While there are a lot of things that I do that don’t require lists I still find them to be useful tools. On the other hand, when I’m supervising people I don’t like giving out lists. If someone wants to make their own list then that’s fine with me. However, I discourage myself from giving them out because they are just tools.

When we consider the ten commandments we’re looking at a list. If you’re not familiar with these you can check them out in Exodus 20. Sometimes, I wonder why the 10 commandments were written on tablets when the other laws that were given, 613 of them, were not. I suppose that Moses wouldn’t have been able to carry that many tablets down the mountain.

The 10 commandments and the 613 of the mitzvah tell me, if I didn’t already know, why handing someone a list of things to do or not do doesn’t work very well. The 10 commandments may appear to be clear and understandable but some of them might be considered circumstantial. Let’s take a look at Exodus 20:13, “You shall not murder” (NIV). Most of the Biblical translations in English use the word “murder” while a few, like King James (KJV), use the word, “kill.” That might not seem like a big deal because there are so many other versions to consider. The KJV though is still one of the top three English Bible translations. My opinion is that’s because there are no copyright issues with it. However, the KJV was translated around 1615 which means for 300 years or so there weren’t that many other translations to read, if you could read and afford a book, for the Christian.

The word we’re looking at here for “murder” is “ratsach” in Hebrew and means “To dash in pieces, kill, to murder.” Hence, many earlier translations using the word “kill” instead of murder. There’s a difference between killing someone and murdering them, isn’t there? That’s the issue I have with giving someone a list of things to do or not do. Interpretation and circumstance.

One of the chores that the kids used to have was cleaning the bathroom. After many lists that somehow failed to encompass the enormous and difficult task of cleaning the bathroom, I thought that I had finally made the list of lists to only to walk in one day after they were “done” and find a pile of their dirty clothes on the bathroom floor. Their response was, “It wasn’t on the list.” Fortunately, the judge understood and I was acquitted of ratsach.

However, I still like to make lists for myself and maybe you do too. The reason I’m going on about lists today is because of this verse from Lamentations.

Her filthiness clung to her skirts; she did not consider her future. Her fall was astounding; there was none to comfort her. “Look, Lord, on my affliction, for the enemy has triumphed.”

Lamentations 1:9 (NIV)

“She did not consider her future” for some reason got me thinking about lists. I’m thinking of returning to school and I have a list of everything that I think needs to be done. One could say that, in making a list, you’re considering the future, right? Everyone might not be into lists but there are times, usually big events, such as getting married when one makes a list. Hence, you’re thinking about, or considering, the future and how you want it to turn out.

Getting married is a big deal so when you’re planning for the wedding you do it with sincerity. I’d go so far as to say that anytime you make a list it’s like a pledge of sincerity. After all, you wouldn’t be making a list if you weren’t sincere about it when you made the list. A list is nothing more than a plan of what to do or not to do. Some are more detailed than others and you might not think of it as a plan but it is.

How often, when you’re planning do you make a plan B? The course of action to take if the first plan falls short in some way. Plan Bs take into consideration circumstances. I don’t know how often one might find oneself drawing up a second plan but it’s not uncommon in things like war. I’d say that the more serious the event the more detailed the plan and the more sincerity that’s put into it. That’s why any good strategist will have a plan B.

Do you have a plan for your life? Not for the things of this world; your career, where to honeymoon, live, etc. What’s your plan for after this life on earth? The Bible reminds us that, “We may make a lot of plans, but the Lord will do what he has decided” (Proverbs 19:21 CEV). You see, your money, job, marriage, education, or much of anything else on this earth will not matter when you die. When you die God will ask you these two questions when you stand before His throne of judgment, “What did you do with my son, Jesus Christ, and what did you do with the talents, gifts, opportunities, relationships and resources I gave to you?”

How you answer these two questions determines first, where you’ll be going. Those who believe in Jesus and are saved Christians will go on to their eternal reward in heaven. Those who do not will go into eternal damnation. Those who haven’t handled well the things God gave them in this life will have little when they go onward into heaven. Those who do well will hear, “‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness'” (Matthew 25:21 NIV)!

Do you know God? God knows you and He loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, right now, and He wants you to know Him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so that we could be free of guilt, be freed from death, and live eternally with Him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation today:

Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.