Sunday, July 15, 2018

Hit it big!

Many of us spend an inordinate amount of time planning, organizing, and generally creating a vision for our future without any evidence that implies we are guaranteed that future! It is human nature to count on the unseen, the unknown, to come to pass - for some, it is 'hope', but for others, they are counting on what will never come to pass because it was never intended for them. Those who hold out to win the lottery are playing against odds so great that their chances of ever winning are astronomical. Yet, they keep playing. Is that hope, or is that 'false hope'? If they are putting off the pursuit of goals because they would need that windfall fortune to do it, chances are they will never realize their goals! There is a place for hope, but hope must be founded in faith, rooted in a solid foundation, and reliant upon something (or someone) that can actually produce the outcome!

Don't brashly announce what you're going to do tomorrow; you don't know the first thing about tomorrow.  (Proverbs 27:1)

The idea expressed in this passage is not that we aren't supposed to have a well-thought out plan or a vision for our future, but simply that we are not to brashly just expect that we have the guarantee that it will come to pass, or that things will work out exactly as we plan. When we approach our tomorrows as though they will always be there, or that somehow we control the events of our tomorrows, the idea of trusting God for the outcome is not really there. Over the past several years, many of my friends and acquaintances faced tremendous things they never thought they'd face. Several have undergone mastectomies, still others have watched as their daughter underwent brain surgery, hours of painstaking therapy, and 'relearning' all the things that most young children only have to learn once. Lives have been changed by 'being in the wrong place at the wrong time', such as the young man whose family is now watching him relearn how to care for himself, walk, and say even a few words as a result of those injuries suffered at the hand of a hit and run driver.  None of them had these things "penciled" in on their date books as things they would be facing! Yet all of them are clearly in the hands of our Lord through it all. Life deals us things we never expected - much to our surprise!

We often find we have trusted in a false belief that we would never have to face these tragedies and 'unlikely events'. Tomorrow is never a guarantee and today is the focus, my friends! This can be a tough lesson to learn - today being our focus and tomorrow being left squarely in the hands of the one who holds those tomorrows. There are definitely times when God has a plan that may "perfectly" match our imagined or dreamed plans, and at other times, he may allow some things to cross our path that just don't "fit" with our plans. In those moments when the plans don't seem to 'fit' what we imagined, we need to learn how our God works, what he is looking for in us, and how we can nuzzle up closely to him through it all. That is the only guarantee we have! That he will be with us in our today, using every moment of today to prepare us for our next tomorrow. 

While tomorrow is not guaranteed, the placing of our trust in the one who holds those tomorrows in his hands is never 'misplaced trust'. In essence, God is asking for us to allow him the privilege of directing our path - to do more than live with 'pie in the sky' hopes. He is asking us to allow him to refine our dreams and build upon our hopes. In turn, we find we are brought into places and positions bigger than our dreams. Sure, they may not be 'lottery rich winnings' we realize, but the treasure of gaining what God has prepared for us is much richer than any lottery will ever pay off! Just sayin!