Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Encounters With God: James Robinson

Today's Encounter with God comes from James Robinson.  James (though he'll always be Jamie to my wife and I) was a vital part of my youth group at Springfield Friends Meeting in the late 1980s.  We had lost touch for quite a few years until he was made aware of a Goggle Alert that informed a co-worker (in the high-tech industry) that he had been mentioned on this the very blog.  In fact, he had been inducted into my Youth Group Hall of Fame.  Most of you do not know James, but he is on Twitter @jerobins and he blogs on rare occasions at http://blog.robinsonhouse.com/ . He is married with children and very active in his local church.  It's an honor to share this post with all of you and to call Jamie a friend.

Of Best Intentions
Planning comes naturally to some. My dear wife makes plans, checks up on the plans, gets frustrated when the plans need changing, but, nevertheless, keeps working the plan. My wife will tell you that I'm not big on planning; however, the truth is I do plan. The breakdown occurs in the follow through; not actively changing and updating the plan when the need arises.

I am a leaf on the wind - watch how I soar.
There is a difference between intentions and being intentional. So often, mine is a world of intentions. I had intended on having this blog post completed the morning of May 23rd and emailed to Carl that afternoon. What if I would have been intentional? What if I had planned to have it done early, say by May 19th, and made a deliberate attempt each day to stick to that plan?

Such is my walk with God...
  • I intend to have a quiet time with God each morning
  • I intend to have family devotions three times a week
  • I intend to build my children's character, not just change their behavior
  • I intend to build my wife up daily
  • ...the list goes on
Are my intentions enough?
Despite a popular Hindu quote, I believe God expects more from those that love Him. When I look at myself and God's plans for me (Psalm 37:23), I am ashamed.

A plan is just a plan until it is executed. Intentional is defined as doing something on purpose. It can be depressing to constantly make plans and then fail to execute, especially when we are trying to do things out of our love for God.

Thankfully there is forgiveness and grace so I don't have to be burdened with my past failings. But what about today? What am I doing today to allow God's plan to be fulfilled through me?

Plan, then Execute
I will have a time of solitude with God in the morning. I will make a plan to intentionally build my kids character on a daily basis. I will create a new family devotion plan now that swim team has started and our former schedule is toast. And when the plans get interrupted, I will adjust the plan and keep on working. But, most importantly, I will seek God's wisdom and strength to make the right plans and to enable me to do them well.

The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. -- Proverbs 16:9 ESV

I find encounters with my ever-present God when I am walking beside Him and not off doing my own thing.

~James Robinson


  1. James, you've come a long way from your famous role as a kidnapping gorilla back in the day! Thanks so much for sharing, and for pointing out something crucial- intending to spend time with God is not the same as doing it. Blessings to you, my friend!

  2. Anonymous5/24/2011

    Well said, Jamie! Come to visit Springfield sometime! -Millie Simmons via Marilyn's Facebook

  3. My good intentions have led sometimes to my biggest mistakes, which actually God has used to teach me more about him than everything that has ever gone right.

    Great job!!

  4. Thank you all for the kind words.


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