Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth. Proverbs 27, verse 1.
Here’s another verse that even unbelievers can grasp. I mean, it’s really common sense, and if it isn’t quoted directly later in Scripture, the concept of it is. Later on, Matthew 6 talks about worrying, and about how through worry none of us can even add an hour to our lives. A good friend of mine sums it up differently by saying “refuse to look at the wind.” Don’t dwell on what was, or who you were, or even what might happen. Those things are blowing in the wind, gone with the wind; thank you Bob Dylan and Margaret Mitchell, and thank you Karen for the quote! When you think about it, it’s really another way of saying “don’t worry.” Let God into your life and he will steady your heart on what matters, instead of what was or what could be.
That isn’t to say we shouldn’t dream or make plans. Our God is a god of big plans and of making His dreams come true in our lives. I think it’s good and healthy to dream of who we want to be, places we want to go, and such. Said Cinderella: a dream is a wish your heart makes. It becomes a Godly thing when we let Him work His way in our lives and move in a direction that may or may not take us to those dreams coming true. The dreaming matters because it helps us refine what we believe. As long as we are content and thankful for that, whether the dream comes true or not becomes a moot point as our lives have happiness, meaning and purpose when lived through Him.
And it’s a good and healthy thing to make plans, for God is a god of order. With apologies to physicists who understand the mechanics of space and time much better than yours truly, I say the universe is actually a place of Godly order. It was planned and made that way. As a certified project manager, I say that the six-day creation was the best-executed project ever. That is, of course, until you get to that whole “He died on the cross thing.” That could just be a trump card.
Project or not, God is a god of order and order means planning. It’s a good thing to make plans for our lives. It’s a good thing to plan to ride rollercoasters at Disneyworld. It’s a good thing to plan for a wedding (even when it’s many months away). It’s a good thing to write your daily tasks on a calendar, or to plan to pay your bills every week, or to buy Christmas gifts gradually over time even if you start ‘elfing’ in March. These are all good things to plan.
Where our dreams and plans hit reality, though, is when we lay too much worry onto them. If we worry about what could happen, or if we place all our emotions, trust, and aspirations on the future, we miss today. God has us live in today, in each moment, living for Him. Yes, what could happen tomorrow could be good and could produce good, but “could” is a weighty word. It could also fall apart in a second; it could also hurt a lot; it could also become a disaster.
So God gives us His trust that we might rely on it to let Him work in our lives today, here in each moment. It’s today when He reshapes us and blesses us that we might live today to bring many sons to glory. I’ll even nod to Joel Osteen and say that the phrase of living ‘your best life now’ is meaningful, namely allowing God to live through us and in us because that’s how we live our best life now. Whether that leads to fancy houses, great wealth, or even secure happiness isn’t the point. Letting God live through us now means that we don’t have to boast about tomorrow because we have what is best today.
Tomorrow is Friday. I just received an update from a friend of mine who, like me, is glad it is because it’s been a busy week. At work, I’m nearing the end of a project and undertaking another. At home, it’s been a week of contention, stress, and hectic times. At church, my body is more sore than it’s been in months after moving hundreds of pumpkins off the soggy Waters Edge ground yesterday so that they don’t rot. It’s been a long, hard week…just like other long, hard weeks. I’m looking forward to Friday, and to the weekend, when I can recharge my spirit, fry some chicken in the skillet, and spend some time relaxing away from the work week.
Know what? If tomorrow never comes, I’ll be just fine with that. Tomorrow may never come, and if it doesn’t then greater things are yet to come in the eternity when time becomes moot. But more than that, today is the real time when we get to see what the day may bring forth. Certainly it will bring forth challenges, stresses, temptations, and even sins. It could bring great change, much hurt, or even pain or death. In each of those things, it can bring forth an opportunity to revel in God’s grace, mercy and abundance, then let those things work their supernatural power through little mortal me. Instead of just the negatives, today can bring forth love and understanding. All of us – even unbelievers – look for meaning in our lives, something good to grasp. I say here it is, here and now, instead of just tomorrow.