Why the future matters…..

Over the past few years, there has been a lot of talk on change. Barack Obama built a whole campaign upon it. Brilliant minds like Malcolm Gladwell explain why things are happening in society. As well, people like Daniel Pink explain why there is a vast sociological switch in the way people are thinking. We’re moving out of this analytical left brain thinking into the creative right brain thinking. Harvey Cox wrote The Future of Faith, Phyllis Tickle The Great Emergence, Brian McLaren A New Kind of Christianity, all to describe the great religious and spiritual transition we find ourselves in.

Sometimes, life is moving to fast for us. To much is changing and we can’t keep up: Within the last 6 months, we have seen Gas rise $1.25. We have seen a country endure a tsunami and an earthquake. We are still in war, then trying to pull out of it, now potentially engaging in a new one. Sometimes, life is to moving to fast for us, that we don’t know how to grasp it, understand it, and, deal with it. This is the reality we find ourselves in.

Jesus taught very little on prayer in the Bible, and, when he did, he hardly ever taught us to pray with words. One of the only times we see this, he tells his disciples to pray like this: Our father in heaven, holy is your name, your kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven. When we pray like this, we are praying for a new reality. A reality that is present, but, it isn’t quite present. A future colliding with our life here and now.

What we believe about the future is immensely important. If we believe the world is doomed, and, that God is going to let it rot, so he can destroy it. Then, our best hope, is to hide in our basements and watch re-runs of Boy Meets World, while the rest of the world kills itself off. But, if we believe that God actually cares about the thing he created, and, Jesus actually wanted those realities to collide then we better start dreaming some better dreams.

God’s dream for mankind was to redeem it. He started this with a guy named Abraham, in which he wanted to create a human race that would constantly be blessing each other because God blessed them. When this couldn’t happen, the world needed Jesus to show us the way. We needed God to come be one of us, so we could learn how to live, love and forgive like he does. Jesus came to pain a new reality for us.

Our believed reality for the future is important, because it is what we incarnate today. This is what made Jesus so extraordinary. He was able to pull the best future forward into the present. What we become, is a product of who we are already. And, who we are, is a product of who were. This is why we need a better vision and dream. So that it may collide with who we are today. Without this, we become a people who are absent of vitality and life. This is why we hold to the promises of God, so what will be, may begin to incarnate us.

As we continue to wrestle with the rapid change before us, my hope is that we begin by desiring a dream that is far more beautiful and life-giving, rather than making compromises just to ease what appears dim today.

“If it is hope that maintains and upholds faith and keeps it moving on, if it is hope that draws the believer into the life of love, then it will also be hope that is the mobilizing and driving force of faith’s thinking, of its knowledge of, and reflections on, human nature, history and society.”-Jurgen Moltmann



2 thoughts on “Why the future matters…..

  1. Nicky says:

    Dreaming – someone said it is where reality begins, and I for one certainly believe that. God has some mighty, mighty dreams for our lives, and you know what is even more exciting, is that we are the only people who can live out the specific dreams he has for us, but not only does God have dreams for our lives, he loves to share the dreams we have, to be a part of our thought process our future, our ideas on change, and today, let along tomorrow. He wants to be a big part of that. Dreams need to be nurtured, like the promises he gives us, so they can grow into the dreams that He has for each one of us.

    Danny Silk (Bethel, California) talked recently about writing down
    100 dreams. I haven’t done it yet, but it is there on my list of things to do in April, and I am excited about doing it.

    Our dreams, the things we think about, daydream about, wonder about, ponder. They are more than wishful thinking, they are an essential part of our being. To give everything we dream about to God, for us to invite him to be part of our dream process, to share the secrets of our heart with the one who knit us together, really excites me. Were there is no vision, life perishes (Proverbs 29:18). I know that I want to live, and to dream big, and get excited about the future.

    Thank you again Mike for another great, and very thought provoking post.


  2. I agree what we believe about the future is important – granted fundamentalists care too much about this to the point of only emphasizing the future. I grew up thinking this was a sinking ship all about to blow – and I worried it would all go up in flames before I got to see the planet. Now I don’t worry when I travel – for I know if I miss something it’ll be around…

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