Comedian Woody Allen once said, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” Yet that doesn’t stop Maggie (Greta Gerwig) from trying.
Maggie’s Plan, now in theatres, follows the young New Yorker as she goes from scheme to scheme, with comic results. The film begins with Maggie deciding that she would like to have a child. Having never had a relationship that’s lasted longer than six months, she takes matters into her own hands, asking an acquaintance to provide a sperm donation.
But that plan gets derailed when Maggie meets John (Ethan Hawke), an unhappily married academic and a frustrated writer. As Maggie gives him feedback on his novel, they develop a friendship, which evolves into an affair.
The film then jumps forward three years. Maggie and John have married and are raising a daughter. Everything has gone according to plan—Maggie has her child and John is working on his novel full time. Still, Maggie is unhappy. Teaming up with John’s ex-wife, Georgette (Julianne Moore), Maggie concocts yet another plan—to everyone’s detriment.
While Maggie is not solely to blame for what happens next—John and Georgette play their parts—no good comes out of her attempts to control others. Focusing only on her own needs, Maggie becomes blind to the needs of others. It is only after everything has collapsed that she can tell her friends, “I’ve decided to embrace the mystery of the universe and stop bossing everyone around so much.”
Maggie’s schemes make for a funny film—but also a cautionary tale. The Bible tells us that we don’t need to worry about what shape our lives will take. If we put our faith in God, He will lead us. As Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.”
That’s one plan that won’t fail.