“Jesus gives us hope because He keeps us company, has a vision and knows the way we should go.” – Max Lucado
Future Shock by Alvin Toffler was a huge sensation when it was published in 1970. The book perfectly captured the angst of that time and prepared society for overwhelming changes in the emerging global civilization. It struck a nerve and scared a lot of people. People are scared of the future because we have doubts about our ability to handle the unknown.
Christians are concerned about the future howbeit for a different reason. Some of this concern is due to a deep desire to be where God can use us greatly. But even for the committed Christ-follower, the future is always unknown. We are intrigued about the future and always want to know as much as we can about it before we set forth on our spiritual journey for the next 5 years.
In Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, Gandalf coaxes Frodo to go on a journey by borrowing these words from his Uncle Bilbo: “It’s a dangerous business going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept up to.” The truth is that life is a journey. We either walk with Christ or on our own. All we need to face the future shock of the future is faith in God. No matter what you’re going to face over the next five years, you’re not going to face it alone. God is with you, He is in you, and He is for you.
We often worry about taking big steps in life, about changes, about finances, relationships, health, etc. and all the other critical issues of tomorrow. Will things be dramatically different? Will we look at things differently? Will it be a shock?
Let me suggest a different way of looking at the future. When you think about it, the future consists of three parts. First is the remembrance of the past: a reflection of our history with God and being thankful for God’s work and guiding Spirit through the years. The second part is God being present in our circumstances today. I can’t begin to remember the stories of God working in people’s lives in the devastation of Hurricane Michael. God is present:”God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1 ESV) And then the future is a celebration of what is to come: an anticipation of what Christ will do in and through us in the next 5 years. We all hunger to be made new and, intuitively, we all know that means we must change if we are to be the person God can use today and five years from now.
- Do you think the future will be a shock? Why?
- What can we do this week to look at the future as an opportunity?