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  • Writer's pictureMelinda Eye Cooper

If the Good Lord's Willing . . .

Recently, when I was home, I took Mom to dialysis early on a Saturday morning and the creek was up. It wasn’t high enough to worry about crossing but reminded me of her wise words from childhood.

"If the good Lord's willing and the creek don't rise."

They echoed in my mind all day. Mom used that phrase countless times in my life.

So, as I left, on my way out of her driveway, I snapped some pictures of the risen water. I pondered the common phrase about God's will and the creek.

Because sometimes, what we want is not God's will. And sometimes the creek does rise.

It can rise to the point that we are unable to get across and it’s dangerous if we try.

It can prevent us from getting where we want to go in life. Then we have to turn around and go in a direction we didn't plan on. It can be discouraging. It can even hurt. We may have to swallow our pride when our plans don't work out.

God warns us about our plans and His will.

Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.  Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”  As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil.  If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them. James 4:13-17

"God is large and in charge,” Mom said when I recently broke down in tears during a phone call. I had to accept something terrible that I hated. It wasn't fair and my heart was broken. I didn't get what I planned on and wanted. I hated seeing those I love completely crushed as their hearts broke, too.

We had to accept what happened as God’s will. There was no way to stop it and there was no way to go back and change it.

Mom is right about the creek and she's right about God. But it's difficult when God's not willing and the creek does rise.

It's hard . . .

  • When we lose someone we dearly love

  • When we see someone suffering from an illness

  • When we don't get what we desperately want

The list could go on and on. But under God's sovereign authority is the best place for us to be. He knows the plans He has for us. (Jeremiah 29:11) His plans are for our good and not to harm us.

How can we honor God when the creek rises?


Seek God's will in our lives even when it’s hard.

These days, going home is sometimes hard. There's a small family graveyard along my parent's road that's slowly growing larger.

My oldest sister, Kathy, is buried there. My beloved nephew, Brandon, is buried there. Now, my precious Daddy is there, too. It makes me sad to drive by the cemetery.

Our lives are truly a mist. The older I get the faster life passes by. None of us knows when our time is up. It's best to roll with the punches and hit our knees often. Seeking God in all things because He has our best interest at heart always.

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Simone Barley
Simone Barley

Beautiful! I have shared countless time the memories of my mother "if it the Lord's will" I find my self saying every day .( which was not always the case) I spoke on this at once in our women's bible class the fear of saying if the Lord's will, since we wanted our will.


Stephanie Fields
Stephanie Fields

Awww, this took me back too! I grew up hearing 'good Lord willing and the creeks don't rise'. This is a beautiful deovtional.


J.D. Wininger
J.D. Wininger

Such a difficult question to ask, and answer Ms. Melinda. How can I honor God when the "creek rises" in my life? I think it's by trusting Him to see me through it. Whatever detour or steps He guides me, I can honor Him by trusting Him enough to follow where He leads my friend. Thank you for this heartfelt post.


Jimmie A. Kepler
Jimmie A. Kepler

Lovely. It reminded me of caring for my late mother. She had a kidney transplant at 80 years old. I brought back good memories.



I've used that expression myself. And I've lived in a season of a flooded creek. It's so important to trust God when we don't know what He is doing. And to look for what lessons He has for us while we're waiting.

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