St. Teresa of Avila speculated that God sometimes laughs at our plans. By saying this, St. Theresa didn’t mean that we shouldn’t make plans. To a certain extent we need to plan in order to establish goals and priorities for our lives. Instead, she was referring to our tendency to make our plans without any reference to God and his will for us.
Sometimes we make plans and then hope- or expect- that God will endorse them after the fact. At other times, we simply forget about God altogether. And then, if our plans fall through, we feel cheated, and become frustrated, discouraged, and angry.
In today’s gospel, Jesus reminds us that we have been born again of the Holy Spirit. Like the wind, we can’t see where the Spirit has come from or where it goes. Because the Spirit’s movements and actions are unpredictable, the Spirit may have plans for us that we cannot foresee, and which may be very different from those we ourselves have made.
This doesn’t mean that we’re called to a life without preparations or plans. But it does mean that we’re called to a faithful life, open to the guidance of the Spirit, who leads us to build up God’s kingdom, in ways which may come as a complete surprise.