James 4:13-15 NKJV - "Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit'; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, 'If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.'"
So much of our lives is thinking about what will happen. Either we're making plans for our future, or we're worrying about what our future might hold. This passage could, and perhaps should be studied alongside Matthew 6:34 that also speaks about the future. Today's verses talk about the former - the idea that we can predict what we're going to do and the implication is that we're setting those goals without taking time to pray and ask God for His plans. Remember, in the "Lord's Prayer" the request is, "...Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven..." More often than not we don't even think of consulting God about our dreams and ambitions. We think we can somehow control our future if we "just wish hard enough!" And if our plans don't work out, what do we do? We blame God as if He should have agreed with us as to what we wanted to do! Little did we think that He is the One who has the right to make plans for us and we are the ones who should agree with Him.
Christian, what God wants from us is our willingness to submit our plans to Him for His will to be done. That's the thought in verse 15, "...if the Lord wills..." When God saved us it was to bring us into His family and into His kingdom. He is our King and we are His servants. We're here to serve Him, not the other way around! Too many Christians think God has to agree to their plans when it's the Christian who should be agreeing to God's plans. More about this tomorrow.