I'm apologizing in advance for this rant.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
This verse makes me sick. It really does. Sorry (and I really am sorry if you like this verse. You can. It doesn't hurt my feelings).
It makes me vomit because of how people use it like some theological band-aid for very real, human problems.
So you are sick and dying and you haven't got a job and everything you want is out of reach. Let me help you with that: God knows his plans for you. Thanks.
I would probably punch someone in the face if I was really struggling and someone tried to apply this remedy to a loss I have had.
I have to believe that my faith is applicable and relevant. I've wasted too much time to believe otherwise. And I also believe that throwing this verse on the fire of sin and suffering is like offering candy to a starving man when you have milk and bread in your backpack. You might kill him, because he might hope for all the wrong things.
Because a lot of people place the word "prosper" squarely in their terms and forget that God's view of the word may only mean eventual salvation. Should he bless me while I am here, praise him. If not, may I be as faithful as Paul to admit that grace is sufficient.
Sometimes, Lazarus is meant to die, and that was still God's plan even if you were not on the same page.