Tag: future

How Can I Know My Future?

 
I’ve noticed some Facebook posts advertising a way to find out what’s going to happen in 2016. Other posts give you a special word for the coming year. I probably wasn’t supposed to, but I did that one twice. My first word was FUTURE. The second one was JOY. I’m not sure what I’m to do with them, but they’re mine, all the same. 

Feeling a little left out, I decided to give my readers and friends a better way to know their future. No, I won’t use mumbo jumbo, tarot cards, Ouija Boards, crystal balls (though one is pictured above), or even a Bingo card. And while I can’t guarantee 100% accuracy, or that everything will happen within a twelve month time frame, I’m fairly certain with what I’m about to tell you.

The question many people ask is, “How can I know my future?”

“Will I be rich?”

“Will I get married/divorced?”

“Will I get sick and die?”

Sorry to disappoint you before we really get started, but NO ONE can give you that information unless they’re God, or have been given a word from God. But God is not in the business of throwing that sort of information about willy-nilly. 

I don’t care what Sister Susie Smoke and Mirrors sells you for $20 an hour. 

But if you would really like to have an idea what 2016 has in store for you, listen closely and I’ll give you a tip.

Next year will be a year of sowing and reaping. 

How’s that, you ask?

Maybe I should have said, “reaping and sowing.” Because you are going to reap in 2016 what you’ve sown in 2015. 

How have you treated your friends and acquaintances? Nice? Then expect to gain more friends. Nasty and rotten? Then I feel sorry for you.

Have you been cultivating an intimate relationship with Jesus? Praying? Reading His Word? Sharing your faith? Then I’d say 2016 will be a year of even greater opportunities to know Him, and make Him known. 

What have you been doing with your finances? Have you been tight fisted; unmoved by the needs of people around you? You can probably figure on a tough year financially. “One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want.” (Proverbs 11:24 ESV)

What have you been reading and watching? How have you been investing your time? Think about it, and you’ll come up with your own answer.

I said the year 2016 will be a year of reaping and sowing. If you’re pleased with the crop you’ll be harvesting, great; don’t change a thing. Sow the same thing for the 2017 season.

But if you’re kind of dreading the new year’s crop, begin now, even before this year’s over, sowing a different seed. 

After all, whatever you sow, that’s what you’ll reap. 

You are creating your own future.

“Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.” (Galatians 6:7 ESV)

“The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.” (2 Corinthians 9:6 ESV)

“While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.” (Genesis 8:22 ESV)

Life Is Short

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Life is short. So brief. It’s like an early morning mist covering a quiet, peaceful valley. For as soon as the sun rises, casting its illuminating rays into the valley, the mist and shadows are gone.

So short. So brief.

Even someone blessed to see their years extend into the 80’s, 90’s, and 100’s, have only had a brief pilgrimage here on earth.

But length of life does not equal value or importance.

The Lord has revealed to mankind the things He values in a life. Some things we know inherently, such as moral laws. Other things are revealed in His Word.

“The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, with every secret thing, whether good or evil.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 ESV)

“He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8 ESV)

Mankind has a tendency to live as though this life is without end, like they’re indestructible, and any mention of an eternal reward or judgment is simply a myth.

What a shame! What a waste!

What are YOU doing with YOUR life? What will you leave behind when your life on earth is over?

Who are YOU devoted to? Who are YOU investing in? What will be YOUR legacy?

You are writing your obituary; you are living out, demonstrating, how you want people to remember you. So, how WILL people remember you?

What kind of conversation will you have with God, when your short life is all used up?

“…you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.” (James 4:14 ESV)

The Master Plan… my short story

Jan and Phyllis2It was a dark and dreary night, which seemed to last a lifetime.

In fact, it was lasting a lifetime. The first 20 years of my life.

Darkness and chaos describe my early years. Oh, sure, there were glimpses of light and order, hope and joy, now and then. But dreariness described my life as a whole.

Kind of like when “in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”. There wasn’t a sign in the heavens inviting change. No. Darkness, disorder, decadence, and dismay screamed constantly at Him and His plans, “We cannot, will not, be changed. We will forever remain like this!” That seemed to describe my life.

But, the entrance of His Word brought light; and the rest, they say, is history.

I had times, as a kid, really enjoyed my life and thought things were great. Like the times we’d have the neighborhood over and play ball in our backyard. Kids everywhere, running, laughing, without a care in the world. Or the time the ice cream truck would come down the street, beckoning us with its happy tune. All the neighborhood kids would stop what they were doing, run to find their parents, and literally beg them into buying a Buried Treasure, Drumstick, or some other sweet and cold treat. Ah, the good old days.

There were a few times of hope and joy as a teenager, but those years were primarily filled with strife and unrest. Not much hope for the future. No promise of life, that I could see anyway. Have you ever known someone who seemed to be okay and in great health, but was really losing a battle with cancer? That’s how my life was. Looked alright on the outside, but inside I was dying. If something happened I didn’t like, couldn’t control, or attacked my vulnerable heart, I would pack up and leave. I tried fighting back, but eventually concluded leaving was the best way to preserve what life I had.

A few people told me about this Man named Jesus. Fairytale stuff, as far as I was concerned. Besides, I didn’t need religion. Darkness and chaos were serving me just fine. It was something I was used to.

When I was 17, darkness seemed to ease up a bit. I met this girl who began to love me; darkness, chaos, hurt and all. I was so energized by her, hope for the future began to grow. Plans for a life together were forming. Buying an old “Bread Truck” decorated with colorful flowers, travelling the country, playing music, seeing the sights, living the dream, became known to us as “The Master Plan”.

We finally did get married and started living the Plan. No bread truck, just a cool 1964 Rambler Classic 770 named “Roger”. Life was but a dream, sh-boom, sh-boom.

Something happened during our second year of living our dream. I can’t really explain it. I only know we met this couple who had a “light” shining in their life. Love and life seemed to exude from them, attacking the darkness surrounding us; as though God was looking at our world, commanding His light to shine in our dark places.

Light be! Light was!

“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.” “He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of Life.”

That was close to forty years ago. Never did get a bread truck. We have done some traveling, played some music, lived a few dreams, had a few nightmares. But we discarded the Master Plan. Traded it in for something full of love, life and hope. A future and a hope! We call it “The Master’s Plan.”

And the rest is, as they say, His Story.

If darkness and chaos has filled your life, there is a God in Heaven Who knows how to change your world.

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