About the Author

Crystal is passionate about cultivating a community where faith, fitness, and friendship come together. Author of “Creative Basics: 30 Days to Awesome Social Media Art,” Crystal is a writer, speaker, host of the Write 31 Days challenge, and coach who shares encouragement at her blog, crystalstine.me. Connect with her on...

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  1. I needed those words this morning. Sometimes we do just need to rest in his arms. Our striving does not accomplish God’s dreams…it is instead I think when we relax, trust, and soak in the present moment that we see that our purpose may be in the now.

    • Beautifully said Jennifer 🙂 There is peace that comes as well, when we can step back and trust that – behind the scenes? – we’re being taken care of.

    • Beautifully said Jennifer 🙂 There is peace that comes as well, when we can step back and trust that – behind the scenes? – we’re being taken care of.

  2. So much truth here! I am a plan my work and work my plan kind of girl and giving up and giving over to God has never been an easy thing… And yet it’s my hearts cry to have the desires of my heart – the one’s that God placed there in the beginning – before I even knew what I wanted – and so I try to relinquish me need for control and for everything to go smoothly – back to Him. Ummm… I don’t always succeed and it’s really hard sometimes. Praying for you friend as God reveals His plans for you – I am excited to see Him move in your life.

    • My prayer warrior, cheerleader friend 🙂 Why am I not surprised to see you here this morning? What a blessing you are. God is on the move, sister – let’s put down our agendas and let Him lead us!

    • My prayer warrior, cheerleader friend 🙂 Why am I not surprised to see you here this morning? What a blessing you are. God is on the move, sister – let’s put down our agendas and let Him lead us!

  3. Loved this! Just this week I had my plans set before me & things didn’t go as “I” had planned. God’s agenda won out…& I’m glad. The battle has been getting this wanna-be type A personality to remember that I am glad & not stress. Thanks for the reminder :-).

    • Your comment immediately made me think “this is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice & be glad in it”…except change “the day” to “the plans” 😉

    • Your comment immediately made me think “this is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice & be glad in it”…except change “the day” to “the plans” 😉

  4. Love this! It’s so true: seeking His goals and desires for us should be our number one goal. When we come to this realization, our dreams seem to unfold in an unexpected way. Great reminder! Thanks:).

  5. Crystal, this is such a beautiful reminder. I just love it. I’m that type A person, too, with spreadsheets, lists, plans, schedules, everything… and not a lick of it matters 😉 It may bring me comfort for 5 minutes, but only in prayer and completely handing things over to him do we find true peace! Glad to know I’m not the only one who has ever forgotten to put on deodorant… oh wait…

  6. Thank you!! I too am a type A. I too have plans and lists and ideas jotted down. I struggle with giving it all to God even though I truly desire His plans to be carried out in my life each and every day. “Oh if His plans lined up with mine” is how I think many times. So silly, so foolish. As I sit and write perhaps your statement – “We can come as we are to the foot of the cross with the deepest, wildest dreams of our hearts and know that we serve a God big enough, strong enough, wise enough to take them and make them beautiful in His time.” is something I need to let settle in my heart a bit. Well, thanks again. Think I’ll hop over to your blog now and visit you there. Have a blessed day!

  7. So I’m not really Type A (read: I’m pretty much fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants) but it still bothers me when the plans I have in my head (they rarely make it to paper) don’t happen the way I envisioned. The last few months have really been an opportunity for me to learn that it’s ok to place those dreams and plans and hopes and everything else in His hands. It seems to be a daily choice, and I sure don’t have it figured out completely yet, but I’m so glad I can trust Him for the best He has for me.

    Beautiful words today, friend. Blessings and hugs!

    • Oh Mel, the plans God has for you are good and beautiful and perfectly timed. Keep flying by the seat of your pants, sister – just let Him pick the direction 🙂

  8. So I’m not really Type A (read: I’m pretty much fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants) but it still bothers me when the plans I have in my head (they rarely make it to paper) don’t happen the way I envisioned. The last few months have really been an opportunity for me to learn that it’s ok to place those dreams and plans and hopes and everything else in His hands. It seems to be a daily choice, and I sure don’t have it figured out completely yet, but I’m so glad I can trust Him for the best He has for me.

    Beautiful words today, friend. Blessings and hugs!

    • Oh Mel, the plans God has for you are good and beautiful and perfectly timed. Keep flying by the seat of your pants, sister – just let Him pick the direction 🙂

  9. ‘God doesn’t want want worn out worship”…oh! Bless you from this weary soul who is in deep need of His plans and His desires. Thank you, Crystal!

    • Mollianne, it’s amazing that God gave me these words several weeks ago knowing that today I’d be walking in a season of weariness and needing to hear His plans clearly. We walk together on this road – praying that you would find rest in the Father and that His will for your life would be revealed in perfect timing.

    • Mollianne, it’s amazing that God gave me these words several weeks ago knowing that today I’d be walking in a season of weariness and needing to hear His plans clearly. We walk together on this road – praying that you would find rest in the Father and that His will for your life would be revealed in perfect timing.

  10. As I reached the end of your post, I realized that the song “Beautiful Things” was running through my mind. Even from the ashes, He crafts beauty.

  11. “We can come as we are to the foot of the cross with the deepest, wildest dreams of our hearts and know that we serve a God big enough, strong enough, wise enough to take them and make them beautiful in His time. He will take the parts of us that we don’t think are good enough, the ones we forgot to put make-up on, the ones that might be less than perfect, and He will refine them until there is beauty from the ashes.”

    Thank you for sharing this. I needed to hear this as I am in a time of very much needing to trust His plans as I cannot make many of my own. I have been almost bedridden for 7 months with CFS and the future is so unknown. I am scared to dream and make plans for the future but am now entering into a period where God is welcoming me to dream while being held by Him who has my life secure in His hands. I am praying that He will lead me and that this will become beauty from ashes in His time.

  12. “We can come as we are to the foot of the cross with the deepest, wildest dreams of our hearts and know that we serve a God big enough, strong enough, wise enough to take them and make them beautiful in His time. He will take the parts of us that we don’t think are good enough, the ones we forgot to put make-up on, the ones that might be less than perfect, and He will refine them until there is beauty from the ashes.”

    Thank you for sharing this. I needed to hear this as I am in a time of very much needing to trust His plans as I cannot make many of my own. I have been almost bedridden for 7 months with CFS and the future is so unknown. I am scared to dream and make plans for the future but am now entering into a period where God is welcoming me to dream while being held by Him who has my life secure in His hands. I am praying that He will lead me and that this will become beauty from ashes in His time.

  13. Having laid down my own plans recently and so I could pick up God’s, I know the feeling of being on His agenda. You put words to this beautifully.

    And girl, about the make up…I’ve gone out of the door with one eye done and one eye bare. Good times.

    • See, this is why we’re friends 🙂 Keep picking up the dreams God lays before you – He is working powerfully in your life, and I can’t wait to see what else He has planned!

  14. Having laid down my own plans recently and so I could pick up God’s, I know the feeling of being on His agenda. You put words to this beautifully.

    And girl, about the make up…I’ve gone out of the door with one eye done and one eye bare. Good times.

    • See, this is why we’re friends 🙂 Keep picking up the dreams God lays before you – He is working powerfully in your life, and I can’t wait to see what else He has planned!

  15. All of this. So true! “God would place on my heart a desire to do exactly what He created me to do.” I have been praying this same thing! It’s funny too because the things I thought I was called to are turning out to be nothing compared to my true calling. I had to surrender my “ideal” future. I had dreamed up this perfect little life for myself. But once I began to surrender those desires to God, He was faithful to put His desires in my heart. And the things he is calling me to are so much bigger than my own plans. It is truly Kingdom work that He wants us to do. Not to be satisfied with our safe, comfortable lives. But we must first give up our own desires in order to be filled with His desires. Thanks for the encouragement Crystal!

    • Oh Sarah, you just summed up my life so well in this comment! Yes – what I planned for myself pales in comparison to what God is revealing as my calling, my passion. Yes – my perfectly planned, safe, secure, comfortable life has been taken away to make room for the opportunities God wants me to pursue. Keep going girl, you’re chasing all the right things!

    • Oh Sarah, you just summed up my life so well in this comment! Yes – what I planned for myself pales in comparison to what God is revealing as my calling, my passion. Yes – my perfectly planned, safe, secure, comfortable life has been taken away to make room for the opportunities God wants me to pursue. Keep going girl, you’re chasing all the right things!

  16. Yes and amen! Love what you said about how he doesn’t desire for his daughters arms to be so weighted down with plans and agendas that we no longer reach for him. Yes!! Thank you for these reminders Crystal!

  17. Thank you for this reminder. I need to be reaching for Him. I’ve been feeling that weight lately and know its because its been too many days filled with my own agenda. Bless you for your words today.

    • Love that! Thinking that might need to be my next Red Letter Words purchase 😉 Thank you, so much, for leaving me kind words here. You are a cheerleader to the cheerleaders 🙂

    • Love that! Thinking that might need to be my next Red Letter Words purchase 😉 Thank you, so much, for leaving me kind words here. You are a cheerleader to the cheerleaders 🙂

  18. Thank you so much for this! I choose today to give everything I ever dreamed of doing, to Him, to His perfect will! I fly by the seat of my pants most days but enjoy having a plan for the week, and most times things don’t go my way… Dealing with anxiety isn’t fun and I’m sure it stems from my hard grip on MY schedule, and not being FREE to live this life in a care free state… I need to let go, and let Him take control of these days He’s given and be thankful for even these anxiety laden moments, trusting in His care and the pruning and molding taking place!

    • Oh the pruning..yes, it’s so hard to see the finished vision when we’re in the middle of that, but doesn’t God just know exactly how to carefully frame us & fashion us to look like Him in the end? There is freedom in trusting Him!

    • Oh the pruning..yes, it’s so hard to see the finished vision when we’re in the middle of that, but doesn’t God just know exactly how to carefully frame us & fashion us to look like Him in the end? There is freedom in trusting Him!

  19. Amen, friend!! I get worn out on all my plans, too… and am so grateful God knows when to redirect me, when to put a pause on things, when to move full steam ahead! He is so good to care for our hearts, when we don’t remember how to. (Also, I totally forget deodorant sometimes, too.) 🙂

  20. Thank you Crystal for words of wisdom. 🙂 🙂 🙂 My favorite life verse is
    Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you.”

    “My plans will never be perfect. AMEN and AMEN!! I have made plans and gone ahead with some of them only to realize they weren’t part of His plans for me. Why is it so hard to pray about our plans and ask Him what He thinks?

    Thank God I can come as we are to the foot of the cross with the deepest, wildest dreams of our hearts and know that we serve a God big enough, strong enough, wise enough to take them and make them beautiful in His time. “He will take the parts of us that we don’t think are good enough, and refine them to make beauty from ashes.” That speaks directly to my heart now. There have been many a day when I didn’t feel I was “Good enough” in work, as a wife, etc. I felt “down”. Praise God He came and lifted me up out of the mire.

    Praying for the plans He has for you!

  21. Thank you Crystal for words of wisdom. 🙂 🙂 🙂 My favorite life verse is
    Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you.”

    “My plans will never be perfect. AMEN and AMEN!! I have made plans and gone ahead with some of them only to realize they weren’t part of His plans for me. Why is it so hard to pray about our plans and ask Him what He thinks?

    Thank God I can come as we are to the foot of the cross with the deepest, wildest dreams of our hearts and know that we serve a God big enough, strong enough, wise enough to take them and make them beautiful in His time. “He will take the parts of us that we don’t think are good enough, and refine them to make beauty from ashes.” That speaks directly to my heart now. There have been many a day when I didn’t feel I was “Good enough” in work, as a wife, etc. I felt “down”. Praise God He came and lifted me up out of the mire.

    Praying for the plans He has for you!

  22. How beautiful !!! Interestingly enough, I’m reading you wonderful words after
    seeing a printed copy of a volume of testimonies that has been in the works for
    years to be published by our Women’s Fellowship. “We can come as we are to the foot of the cross with the deepest, wildest dreams of our hearts and know that we serve a God big enough, strong enough, wise enough to take them and make them beautiful in His time. ” How
    appropriate and timely for us; a reminder that absolutely nothing happens until
    HE wills it so.

    Thank you and continued Blessings.

  23. How beautiful !!! Interestingly enough, I’m reading you wonderful words after
    seeing a printed copy of a volume of testimonies that has been in the works for
    years to be published by our Women’s Fellowship. “We can come as we are to the foot of the cross with the deepest, wildest dreams of our hearts and know that we serve a God big enough, strong enough, wise enough to take them and make them beautiful in His time. ” How
    appropriate and timely for us; a reminder that absolutely nothing happens until
    HE wills it so.

    Thank you and continued Blessings.