Wanda’s Journal

When Plans Go Awry

Toward the end of last year, my husband and I decided to spend the winter months in Florida, where we could enjoy more days of warm sunshine instead of the cold snowy weather at our home in the Pacific Northwest. We made plans to arrive in Sarasota on Christmas Eve, and looked forward to our daughter and son-in-law joining us on Christmas Day. However, due to bad weather, our flight out of Seattle got cancelled and we ended up spending the next few days at a hotel. It was two days past Christmas when we finally arrived at our destination, only to discover that our vacation home had no heat and a cold spell had hit Sarasota. Several other things went awry while we were there, and we had to make new plans when things came up that had to be cancelled or changed to different dates. We did our best to enjoy our first two months, however, and I managed to get a lot of writing done.

On February 22nd another unexpected event happened that quickly put an end to our time in Florida. We received word that our daughter had suffered a stroke and was in serious condition. After contacting my publisher to let them know what had happened, I asked them to cancel all five of the book signings I had planned to do in March and April. Then we closed up the house and secured a flight to Boise, Idaho, where our daughter had been taken to a hospital. I put the word out to our church’s prayer chain and asked for prayer via my Facebook pages. It was a comfort to know that our precious daughter had thousands of people praying for her, and we were ever so thankful that she received good care and her life had been spared. We did not return to Florida to finish out the winter as originally planned. We wanted to be close to home so we could go back and forth to the hospital in Idaho as often as possible.

Instead of being disappointed because our plans had gone awry, I thanked God for giving us safe travels and giving our daughter back to us. If you have been following me on Facebook or receiving my email newsletters, you know that our daughter is doing remarkably well. She still has a ways to go for a full recovery, but we believe in God’s time, and with her determination, she will get there.

Have you ever made big plans and had them go awry? How did you deal with the unexpected changes? Did you accept them and do what needed to be done? Could you feel God’s presence during the difficult time you faced? Did you grow in your walk with the Lord? I and our family members sure did. The situation we faced drew us closer to each other and especially to God. It has been a reminder that our strength is in Him.

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  1. Yes. We have had plans that we had to change and while at the time it may have been disappointing, we trusted God through it all and that His plan was far better than ours..Yes, in those moments we did grow closer to God.

  2. I have made big plans in my life before and thought I had my life all planned out and then God sent my son to me and showed me that I was not the one in charge and I am so glad he did. I can not imagine life without him. He rounds out our family of 5.

  3. Yes, I’ve had plans that had to be changed but it worked out for the better in the end. Praying for your daughter for complete healing through the Great Physician. <3

  4. Two years ago, I had plans go awry. I had to pray that things would turn out as God planned. We are still working out some issues, but we are happy in our new community. It turns out that having to move was a blessing. It got us away from a nasty neighbor. We now live in a community where most of the people are friendly and helpful. You never know what God has planned for your life. I am glad to hear that your daughter is doing better. I am sorry that your Florida trip did not work out. It was one of our colder winters (the first in many years).

  5. Yes, we have had plans not go as we would have liked them to go. It did draw us closer together as a family and closer to God too! So glad to hear that your daughter is doing much better! We will continue to keep her and your family in our prayers.

  6. I’m having some set backs this month and had to retire. I am praying and going to put more Faith in God than I have before.

  7. I’m so glad your daughter is doing better and pray she continues to heal. I think my biggest plan and things went awry would have to be last year for my wedding. We had a destination wedding in Las Vegas. It wasn’t anything major but was a little stressful. The corsages for the girls were falling apart before the ceremony even started, the air conditioner in the chapel wasn’t working and at the end of the trip we got to the airport to drop my father off ( he was leaving the day before us) and found out his flight was cancelled. Everything ended up working out. Couldn’t do anything about the corsages except to pin the roses back on, they moved us into a larger chapel where the air worked and my dad was moved to our flight and my husband and I were able to get him a room in the hotel for the night instead of him having to stay in ours.

  8. Yes I have several times. But in the end I knew it was the Lord’s plan. We just regrouped and made the best out of it. Still had a good time and enjoyed what God gave us .

  9. I think that most of us have had plans drastically change, and believe that age and maturity help us accept these when we are older. It isn’t, however, but it isn’t just chronological age. It’s the maturity that comes from growing in our Christian faith. I send your daughter and all of you continued prayers!

  10. Yes, I think that most of us have had our plans drastically change, but how we accept this is often determined by our age, and I’m just not talking about chronological age. As we mature in our Christian walk, we understand that God’s Plan is best and we can trust Him to help us!

  11. Flying to in-laws 2 days before Christmas. Flights canceled due ti weather. Rescheduled to fly and arrive Christmas Eve afternoon. Freezing fog mad us stoned Christmas Eve in San Francisco airport an empty terminal where we was given 3 airplane blankets to use for 4 people so I snuggled under everyone’s coats we did arrive late ,Christmas afternoon loosing several days of our trip

  12. We made plans for a much needed autumn trip to my childhood home in Pennsylvania. But in late August of that year I tripped over a planter box in our brick patio and fractured my upper arm in 2 places. I knew I would not be recovered enough to travel in early October. What a disappointment I felt! I hadn’t been home for 6 years. However, we trusted that God’s ways were for our good and rescheduled our trip for the following year. Then in mid-November of that year my younger brother passed quite suddenly of Covid pneumonia. Now we had to make a trip home for a funeral. Our youngest son went with us to share driving ( we could not get a flight). As we reflected later, we believed God kept us home in October because He knew we would have to be going home just weeks later in November.

  13. I am so glad that your daughter Lorine is doing well! Whenever I have had plans go awry, my first reaction is not biblical. However, after the first minute or two of being angry or upset the Holy Spirit whispers gently in my ear to “let go and let God”. I know He has a plan and I can either relax into it, or fight against it. His plan is always the right one so it would be a losing battle.

  14. Wow, the power of prayer even when plans get changed is so evident here. God Bless you and continued prayers are with your daughter and your entire family for her continued recovery.

  15. I don’t do well when plans I have made get cancelled or delayed. But I have come to realize things happen for a reason and try to go with the flow.

  16. I am so glad Lorine doing better God sure can turn health issues around our prayers to Him helps to I pray for her healing is completely better soon God bless her and all your family I want to say I love your writings Have a good days coming again ❤️🙏

  17. I love your books. There has been many times I had to change my plans. Some times at the last moment. God always works it out.

  18. I love reading your Journal and updates on your everyday Life. continued Prayers for your Daughter. My son and wife and the Children were in Florida and their flight got canceled, they had to find Hotel room and had to out to eat.. They had to wait 2 days before they got a flight where they all could get on the same plane home to Ohio with all the bad Weather here. . My husband and I got to get in 2 extra Days taking care of our just over a year old Granddaughter.. Oh her smile and Her saying ” Papa Papa Papa”.

  19. We definitely need to lean on God’s love, trust, and strength. It’s so true, that “Life is what happens while you’re making plans for the future”!
    I truly believe in living my life as “go with the flow” because it’s all up to God anyway!

  20. So glad your daughter is getting better daily. I had five bypass heart surgeries in 2012. In December of that year my best friend and my sister passed away unexpectedly. Then I had a heart valve replaced in 2016. I couldn’t have survived all of this without my Lord and and all the prayers of family and friends.

  21. I am so glad to hear you daughter is recovering from the stroke. My sister had a stroke almost a year ago and the good Lord is healing her on a daily basis. God is so good.

    Yes, I made a major plan to move from California to Missouri. Several mishaps occurred along the way, but I finally made my way there. A few months after moving across the country I realized it wasn’t what I was supposed to have done. I forgot a significant piece of the move, praying and asking for God’s guidance. He did protect me all along the way and when it was time to relocate back to California the move became easy and doors were opened. The one good thing that came out of it other than God’s grace was I moved as a very shy person and came home and the shyness was gone.

  22. Thanking God for your daughter’s progress and will join everyone praying for a full recovery!
    Yes, God’s plans are far better than mine! Amen!

  23. I understand that plans change. I just go with it and I also think that God might have changed my plans for a reason. I’m glad that your daughter is doing so much better. I know having open heart surgery is hard. I have had two myself. May God bless you and your family!!

  24. Many years ago I lost my Grandmother and we were living inGermany at the time, my husband was in the army. I couldn’t make it back due to a change of circumstances. But I found peace knowing she was home with our Lord!! I am still praying for your daughter 🙏🙏🙏

  25. In October of 2012, my husband and I had plans to go to Shipshewana to visit our Amish friends. We were also planning on going to the horse sale in Topeka. Our trip was cancelled due to his cancer spreading into his brain and the doctors wanted to start radiation treatment immediately. I never was bitter about the cancellation and I only concentrated on getting the treatment he needed. I felt God’s presence the entire journey and had lots of people praying for him. Sadly, Gods will was not for him to be cured, he passed away in February of 2013.

  26. Wanda Brunstetter, I was so happy that my BFF and I were able to meet you in person at your book signing last summer in Kidron, OH. I have read all your books and look forward to each new book that you have written. I am waiting now to read your newest book but my name is in the middle of the long list at my local library. I will celebrate my 85th birthday in May and anxiously waiting my turn to read the first book in the friendship series. I live close to the Amish that live in Middlefield and always enjoy driving through their area also eating at an Amish restaurant. I have prayed for your daughter and I know that God hears our prayers and GOD IS ALWAYS GOOD. I would be thankful to receive a copy of any book that you are giving away this month. My husband passed 15 years ago so my finances are limited now and I patiently wait my turn at the library to read your books. I always know that your books will be suitable to read by Christians. I will leave my address and hope that my name will be chosen to receive a book sometime. Thank you for writing clean books that I can read.
    In Christian love, Dixie Harris, 203 CENTER ST W, WARREN, OH 44481.

  27. So glad to hear about your daughters recovery. I lost my husband from complications of Parkinson’s, July of 2021. God filled me with complete peace.
    I really enjoy reading your books.

  28. I am child of divorce and due to a bitter mother I spent the majority of my life without my father. I was always told he sis not want me. I did not begin to see my dad until I was 16, 11 years after the divorce. I harbored alot of gard feelings toward my dad for unfounded reasons. My dad and I began trying to rebuild after my mom passed away 5 years ago and I began a relationshipwith Jesus. However, with me living in Ohio and him in Kentucky we only saw each other once or twice a year. In November my step mom of 40 years passed away and I started making monthly trips to see my dad. During the last 5 years my did never let me know just how bad his health was. Unfortunately, my dad passed away 3 weeks ago. This was definitely not in my plans but I felt God with me through the entire time. When I would question God or be upset because I did not get enough time with my dad God would remind me of the time we did get. I got to have bible study with my dad after dinner one night when I was there. I got to sit and watch old westerns and just talk about nothing. My dad gave me some of his wisdom on gardening, canning, and living a simple life. He taught me more in the past 5 months, we also had the conversation where he was completely honest about the divorce and I learned he did want me but my mom made it difficult if not nearly impossible for him and I to have a relationship. Through all of this I felt God with me every step of the way, I never felt alone. I have been given a great sense of peace knowing my dad is no longer in pain.

  29. Flexibility is important, not only physically but also in adapting to changes in our lives. Thank you, God.
    I’ve been praying for your daughter’s full recovery. The power of prayer is awesome. I’m one year past the end of chemotherapy and coming up on two years since diagnosis and surgery.

  30. Sometimes when plans are stopped, I think that’s God’s way of keeping us safe.

    PS: So glad you daughter is doing well!
    Prayers lifted up for her & the family

  31. This book sounds wonderful.
    I am so grateful for you and for sharing so much.
    You are a blessing

  32. Hi Wanda,
    so happy and relieved for you to know your daughter is healing. yes, of course, like everyone i have had big plans go awry. unfortunately, for me, at the time i did not know God so my world fell apart. in brief, i have pondered times in my life that i failed to handle things well because i did not know Him and feel badly; however, now it is so different. now that i know the truth……it just makes such a difference. oh, the blessings of God. He is so very good. And yes, my walk with God continues to grow daily….i know He is with me through it all. it makes such a difference; i can’t explain it. i suppose because it is a supernatural thing. hope your day goes well! Blessings on you and your family. Judi

  33. I understand about your daughter having a stroke.
    I understand more about the love Of God more now
    then I ever did. We make our plans. We learn more when
    we accept God’s plans. I my self had a stroke. I have attended
    Brain Injury support groups for many years. I just finished writing
    a story about my son’s brain Injury called a TBI, I also had a TBI..Traumatic
    Brain Injury. In Brain Injury support groups, I’ve watched people recover, not completely, but with the help of GOD and prayers. The brain is amazing(Thank you God). Strokes, concussions, TBI’s, It takes time to heal. I will continue to keep you, your family and your daughter in my prayers.

  34. The passing of my husband of 60 yrs. came suddenly a yr. ago yesterday. But, the Lord’s compassion was so real and I could not get over the strength, solace, and serene outlook He gave me every hour each day. The presence and the refreshment of the Lord was ever near me hour after hour. I am sure you felt the same as your daughter suffered this stroke.

  35. 2020 was the year we had plans for a big family trip. We weren’t sure where but knew we wanted to go. Covid hit and with that came the death of my father in law just 2 weeks after diagnosis and then 2 days later I was in icu with Covid, a heart attack, pneumonia and sepsis. More than my family could handle, BUT GOD. My favorite phrase. I’m alive. Our trip was postponed. I suffered two more hospitalizations from Covid but we stood firm in our faith.

  36. My heart is so happy for you as it is just so delightful hearing about how God has spared your daughter. I’ve got you all in my prayers. Change is hard, as is the acceptance of this change. My husband has been fighting colorectal cancer for the past 3 years and it has turned our lives inside out and upside down. I’ve found my Savior in a whole new way through it all. Our God makes a way, when sometimes there seems to be no way. Thankful for you and your gifts of writing. Reading your books take me to a place of peace in a world of commotion. Thank you Wanda.

  37. God’s ways and will is always best, whether or not we understand them. How wonderful about your daughter! God can’t be anything but good! It is a blessing to know you are giving The Lord all the thanks for answered prayers! I rejoice with you!

  38. I am so thankful your daughter is better. I believe in the power of prayer and miracles. God bless you and your family.

  39. Yes, life plans went haywire when & he my ex & I split &
    he moved in with his former girlfriend. Not quite how I had life planned out. So I definitely leaned on God for his wisdom, guidance & support.

  40. I enjoyed this book so much!
    Disappointment is not easy sometimes. I try to dwell on reminding myself that God is in control of everything!! And pray, pray that I can put my trust in him..
    I’m dealing with health issues now. Try to make the best of each day and be thankful I’ve had many good years! Blessings to you and your family.

  41. Five years ago my stepmother suddenly passed away. My dad depended on her for many things. When he asked me to take over as POA I cried at night because I knew from taking care of my mom that it is a huge responsibility. My pastors sermon the next day spoke directly to my heart about long suffering and serving the Lord. I accepted that helping dad was a service to God. My dad is not saved and we pray that through our loving service to him he will come to accept Christ as his savior. I have seen so many workings from God through this time that my faith has grown stronger.

  42. Five years ago my stepmother suddenly passed away. My dad depended on her for many things. When he asked me to take over as POA I cried at night because I knew from taking care of my mom that it is a huge responsibility. My pastors sermon the next day spoke directly to my heart about long suffering and serving the Lord. I accepted that helping dad was a service to God. My dad is not saved and we pray that through our loving service to him he will come to accept Christ as his savior. I have seen so many workings from God through this time that my faith has grown stronger.

  43. As a young girl my father would often tell me disappointments and changing of plans more often than not have underlying reasons. God knows where and what we need to do.

  44. When plans go awry. This is close to home for me. I am a technology resource coordinator and I also teach tech to kids from kg to 4th grade. A couple of weeks ago I went in for my annual review and I was told that my contract would not be renewed this year and my last day at my job was June 30, 2023. I was shocked, angry, upset. But I was recently baptised on March 26,2023 and now that God has great plans for me. After talking to the principal at my school I have accepted at para job at my school. It is less hours and a little less pay but I feel I am right where God placed me.

  45. Yes we thought our plans for retirement and then moving to care for my Mom with Parkinson’s. Unfortunately due to unforeseen circumstances we had to move to care for my Mom 2 years sooner than we thought. That meant no retirement income and no salary. It hurt to move and leave friends and especially the uncertainty of income. But God worked out all the details. But with my Mom’s help and my husband getting a pastorate one month before our move. It was good to be back “home” with family but there were days I cried too. Now I can look back and see that the Lord knew ahead of time what our future would be and show us that He would supply the need.

  46. Wanda, Yes I have and I always put my Faith in The good Lord Above! Many, Many Prayers coming to Lorine and Your Family! As He is a Mighty God and He does answer our Prayers Praise The Lord! In his Time Not Ours!

  47. Many times our plans have been changed due to unforseen circumstances. When I was younger I would be upset and disappointed. Then one day I thought maybe things happen because God has other plans for us . I’ve learned to accept the fact that life isn’t perfect. Now I fix what I can and pray about what I can’t. Everyday is a blessing…make it the best day you can.

  48. I praise God for your daughter’s life and giving her the strength and will to get past this part of her journey. He is so faithful. I, too, have grown stronger in my walk with the Lord through life’s trials and am so grateful.

  49. God is so Good, All the Time. I am so happy that he is healing your daughter and I pray that he will continue to renew her strength.
    I LOVE ALL of your books, Wanda.
    Keep on writing your wonderful books. I never used to read much until I found your books and now I read them every day, can’t get enough of them.

  50. Oh how we first want to put our spin on fixing things. I know God must have a sense of humor as He watches our attempts at doing things our way. Then finally, we give it to Him. His timing His mercy His grace His glory.

  51. I have learned to just go with the flow. If something happens that is out of my control it must be happening for a reason. I trust that God has a reason for it happening and I just pray and give it to him and move on. Is that always easy? NO but prayer definitely helps and makes you not feel so alone. I have been praying for your daughter and am so glad that her life was spared. The Lord has good things for her life and what a testimony she is. God is Good.

  52. So often, events force change upon us. A good skill to develop is flexibility, and my husband and I believe that our development of flexibility has kept us happy throughout our marriage. Now, our approach to life, our flexibility, has enabled us to be available for our adult children. You have done what you needed to do to be there for your daughter, and that is a blessing for both of you.

  53. You have to accept it when things go awry. Thank you for Lorine’s update Prayers prayers for a complete recovery. God Bless

  54. When plans do not go as expected there is always a reason. It was not meant to be. Glad Lorine is coming along. God knows best.

  55. It can be disappointing to have things go awry. I feel there is a message God is telling me that there is a good reason. Prayers continuing for Lorine’s healing. God Bless.

  56. Hi Wanda I absolutely love all of your books! I’ve been praying for your daughter 🙏 Krissi Jensen

  57. Praise God he spared her life and she looks young. My daughter had a massive stroke when she was 44 and I know how much you have to lean on God and family to get through all the struggles. With skilled doctors and nurses she got back most of what was lost and she is turning 55 in June.

    I will be praying for a good outcome for your daughter, Lorine. Stroke recovery is long and she will probably be frustrated at times, but with all of you behind her she will be able to see how important her life is to you and work hard to get better each day.

  58. I am grateful that your daughter is improving and I will continue to pray for her. I love your books and cookbooks.

  59. Yes, I believe everyone has plans that don’t work out the way they’d like. The Word says that we make plans but God directs our steps. We have to do our best to remember that God is in control and He knows the plans He has for us. We just have to submit to Him.

  60. I’ve been praying for your daughter! I’ve definitely had big plans that went awry, just as most people do. I guess you could say I had written my chapter book on my life – but I soon realized I was not the author. God’s plans were not my plans. My late husband’s sudden death in his 40’s stopped all plans and dreams of our future. Now, each page of my “book” is written daily because that’s all that is promised. My plan each day is to be the best person I can be for that day and try to make a difference is the lives around me – mostly to my 3rd grade students.

  61. I’m also glad that thankful that your daughter has made a recovery and continues to progress So thankful and God bless all Wanda

  62. Praying for your daughter and family. May .god bless each and every one and keep them in His care 🙏

  63. God always knows what’s best for each of us.Sometimes we may want to question him but we insteadlisten to him because he KNOWS BEST.Your experience in Fla. was unexpected but GOD was working things out.He brought your daughter thru her stroke and he WILL get her back to where she can write and do her music again.I will continue to pray for her and your whole family.What a MIGHTY GOD WE SERVE,PRAISE HIS HOLY NAME!! God bless!

  64. I also want to let you know that I love your books, I can’t wait to get the next new one.I amexcited to read Letters of Trust but due to finanical problems I have to put it as the say on the back burner for awhile as much as that hurts.Keep up the good writing!!

  65. yes, many times in life we have been thrown a curve ball, and then you lift up your woes and concerns to the lord… telling him you do not understand but know that all will be revealed in his time and usually we learn and grow and its used to our greater good and our families greater good. i do believe in the power of prayer and pray often knowing that the lord wants us to bring our worries and fears and problems to him and keep the faith that all will be well and it usually is. so happy for you and your family that your daughters health is improving and this whole situation has brought more closeness and understanding god bless you all.

  66. Lifting your sweet daughter up in prayer. I pray for a complete and speedy recovery. Thank you for the chance to win one of your wonderful books.
    I think most of us have had plans that don’t go as we have planned we just need to remind ourselves that God is in control.

  67. I retired a year ago yesterday at age 78. On Dec 1 I had knee replacement and looked forward to a pain free summer. Mid-January went to hospital with arm pain and numbness, only to be told I’d had over 30 TIA’s and more recently had 7-8 strokes. Changed plan! I’m doing good, and so glad to hear Lorine is improving!🙏🙏🙏🙏

  68. Prayers have been sent for a completer healing for your daughter. Whenever life things in life go awry the only solution is to trust that God has everything under control and he will come through every time even when we can’t see the end or maybe would like a different outcome. Lately it seems that a lot of people are struggling but I know God is still in control and he will see us through each and every season.
    Thank you for continuing to write I truly enjoy your books.

  69. I was in a bad car accident on April.2.002 I almost dies I became closer to god in my recovery. I had a leg that was broken in 5 places . My arm was broke in 3 places, I had a rough go but I made it thru that time. I walk just fine now I know God answers prayers because I had lots of people praying for me and I made it.

  70. We need to trust God even though we do not always understand why things happen. God doesn’t make mistakes.

  71. Yes I have many big plans, but then they don’t happen, but I I the lord Jesus on my side . He had other plans for me.

  72. I was lead singer in my school play it was a busy time with practice and I loved it I sung soprano. Well day of play I was so excited I went next door to my grandmother Mary’s apartment door was locked which was strange being she unlocked it everyday 5am so I could come eat a onion roll and coffee. I knocked nothing I called her nothing finally I climbed through the window from fire escape my grandmother was in her bed not moving or talking I called ems told them I was 9 and my grandmother wouldn’t wake up they came but it was too late she had a massive stroke she was gone. I missed school but most of all I missed my grandmother and the love she gave me.

  73. at first I wondered where God was and if He even cared about me anymore. But HE was listening, only like a loving Father, he knew what I needed far better than I did.

  74. We have had big plans go awry. Sometimes I get very angry about it, which spoils everything. When I can bring a sense of humor into the situation, it changes things and we have a good time despite the changes. When I am very disappointed in something, I have a tendency to forget that God is in control. When I remember that, life is much more pleasant and peaceful, and it sure does make my walk with the Lord better.

  75. Yes I have had plans go awry. When my 8 year old was diagonosed with a brain tumor. Life has changed drastically but I know that God is in charge of all things and I lean on him to get me through each day. It has been 25 years since he took her home and my life had changed. I pray every day for his grace and wisdom to keep me going. I am still keeping your daughter and family in my prayers.

  76. Yes, I have had plans that have gone awry. One thing I do to deal with the unexpected changes is pray. I don’t deal with change well. So, I talk to God about it. With God’s help, I have learned to accept that change is a part of life. The situation that happened to me was when I had my first open heart surgery. I was 23 years old, and told that I had an Aortic Aneurysm that was 9cm across. I had to have my ascending aorta, arch and valve replaced. The cardiologist wanted me to go to Johns-Hopkins University Hospital to have the procedure. But, they didn’t accept my insurance. We then found University of Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia. Then, before I could have the procedure done, the surgeon was transferred to another hospital. You see, I had broken my leg so I had to wait until my leg had healed to have the surgery. We found another wonderful surgeon (third in the country) and I had the surgery. I felt God’s presence through it all.

  77. The lord will do what He thinks is best even if it ain’t what we want . But God loves each and everyone of us. I know I had heart attack at 30 years old and the lord was with me all the way. It has been two heart attacks and two bypasses and raised three kids the lord is still with me. God is Good.