The Appeal of Planners and Trusting God with Our Fairy Tale Plans

photo credit: P a t i e n c e via photopin (license)
photo credit: P a t i e n c e via photopin (license)



Planning our days requires nothing more than a blank piece of paper and pen. Why then this crazy desire of many to have elaborately designed and decorated pages to squeeze into colorful boxes To Do lists,  places to go, reminders and so much more?


I have a theory and you may agree or not agree but the fact is, I believe life is messy. I also believe when our individual lives get messy, and difficult -oh and, um, please let me know if your life is not messy and/or difficult so I can come move in with you immediately.


But, as I was saying, when we start sensing the lack of control we have with so many things in our lives, we start to yearn for a way to feel “in control”. I put the quotation marks around in control to mock you and I.

I want to remind us to keep in mind the fact that that control is like a slippery fish. There you have it, oh- oops, slipped through your hands.


Although I acknowledge trusting God, I sometimes simultaneously believe I am his assistant. Or at least you’d think so when I start to devise my day. I have come to the conclusion (repeatedly) that God does care about the details…and does not need my help in them. What He does need from me is my willingness to seek Him in my all of planning, and trust in His purposes for me, moment by moment.


It’s the moment by moment part where I tend to get in trouble. I don’t readily see my trust in His way escaping me…it’s like a slow tire leak. I recognize I have slipped away from relying on Him, when a wrench is thrown into my plans. There are times I can roll with what comes my way.

Ah, sweet Jesus.

Then there are those other times, when I realize that I have pushed my sweet Jesus right out of the driver’s seat of my life. By the time I recognize it,  I usually am driving on my own, cascading down the road at 9o miles an hour, with him hanging onto the fender (interceding for me, no doubt) waiting for me to crash and burn so he can resume His rightful place.

Jesus’ response to circumstances is slightly different from mine as exhibited  in the Garden of Gethsemane. He sets the precedence:


“Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”


See, those words don’t slide off my lips so easy.

My version would sound something like this, “This is NOT the way things were supposed to happen, Lord! This is not what I wrote in my planner this morning…and I prefer you take this little twist in the plans away NOW, please and thank you. As far is it is up to me, I will make everyone in this house and my life miserable until you do so. Amen. PS. Did I mention I am not a happy camper and that I think this is unfair. Also I want to ask WHY ME,  but we can discuss that later. After you reorder this particular moment in time to my liking. In Jesus’ name. Amen (again).


I know, I know, shameful. But, I am just being honest. Jesus sets the precedence because He is not fighting for control of the situation nor is he complaining about it, but trusting His heavenly Father in it.

Jesus is modeling for us the only proper response to circumstances, people and plans…out of our control.

It is a breath by breath, moment by moment, day by day submission which yields itself to the greater plans from the One who holds all plans in His hands. It is a continual lesson, and choice.


Back to Planner Appeal. Planners are pretty. They don’t always show the messiness of life. They allow us to look at our lives in nice, neat, convenient categories. Unlike some days, planners look orderly. Heck, compared to most days a planner page looks a lot like …a fairy tale.  We embellish, doodle, add color, and even the weather looks manageable from the planner’s perspective. Everything in those well laid out planners has its place and this is appealing, because life is, after all, sometimes messy, painful, hard.


Maybe a planner is a little like a crystal ball. We look into it, nice, new, streamlined and shiny. We look at it through hopeful eyes, looking for what we want to be…knowing all the while we must accept what will be. What is. Whether messy, or pretty. Because, ultimately  we know our reality, but perhaps everyone needs a bit of fairy tale in their plans sometimes.


Are you a Planner Person? If so you will want to check out THIS series.

If you are a Planner Person wanna be, you will want to check into this!

If you want inspiration for Journaling – Go here!


Published by enthusiasticallydawn

Dawn Paoletta is the author of Journaling for Discovery and Delight. Her writing is included in several anthologies and her poems have been included in the Wickford Poetry and Art Exhibit and Books. Dawn is currently working on her next book. Inquiries at

8 thoughts on “The Appeal of Planners and Trusting God with Our Fairy Tale Plans

  1. This is so true and I too had to learn the hard way by having my health MAKE me slow down. It was hard at first but the lessons and spirital strength I have obtained and learned are more priceless. I do use a planner to help show ME what I DID or didn’t do for the day…which helps me pray for guidance onto my next day. Very well said Dawn!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. THanks so much, for commenting Sherry. I know God really can get our attention with health…so often it seems bad, but He loves us, and means to use all for our ultimate good. 😉
      With you on the journey.


  2. I love how you write. You seem to be in my head at times. lol. You are so right about the planners I think. We can have total control over them even when life gets messy. Love, and passing you a cup of hot chocolate cafe’. 🙂


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