Beyond Today

"If you can look into the seeds of time,
and say which grain will grow,
and which will not,
Speak then to me . . . "

Macbeth, act I, scene 1, line 58

Who wouldn't want to hear from someone like that? Who hasn't felt himself standing on tiptoe, straining to see what lies ahead? Even the writers of a weekly news magazine tried to look beyond today. They didn't try many predictions but they did ask some tough, sweeping questions. Among them:

  • Is America in retreat?
  • Will our nation regain its trust?
  • Is public education doomed?
  • Can the world be fed?
  • Can we find more oil?
  • Can we keep hoping?

That last one is really the root issue, isn't it? Unless we have hope, it could mean some pretty dismal years in front of us. Shakespeare's "seeds of time" might very well be scattered and dangerously thinned out by the next century.

But let's limit our thoughts to something we can handle. Most of us must admit those news magazine questions are too vast for us. We need a bite-size chunk to chew on.

Okay then, how about that unit called your family . . . now there's something worth thinking about beyond today. Where are you going? What's your game plan for the next ten years? Given any thought to specific objectives you want to reach—or at least shoot for? How about selecting some priorities? You say there's no hurry? I challenge that. These ten years will literally fly by. A decade from now you'll rip the December sheet off your calendar wondering, "How did ten years go by so fast?"

Ten years . . . Right now, stop and add ten years to your life and (if you have a family) do the same with each of your children.

Suddenly we're all a bit more sober. The clapper of urgency has struck the bell of reality, and some of us sense a summons back to our inescapable responsibility. God commands us to "number our days, that we may present to [Him] a heart of wisdom" (Psalm 90:12).

Forgive me for pressing the issue near the point of offense, but unless some of you who read these words stop and think and start to execute essential goals for the next ten years, indifference, passivity, and procrastination will win another victory. And instead of making a few hard decisions that will initiate beneficial changes, your family ties will loosen, your children will drift, and you'll dread the memory of the way you were.

How much better to invite the living, all-knowing Lord to show you ways to make the coming years much better than the years before! To allow you to become better, as well as older.

How about offering this prayer—in faith:

Lord, since You can look into the seeds of time,
and say which grain will grow,
Speak then to me . . .

Lord, show us how to make the coming years more fruitful than prior years.

Charles R. Swindoll Tweet This

Excerpt taken from Come Before Winter and Share My Hope, copyright © 1985, 1988, 1994 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide. Used by permission. For additional information and resources visit us at www.insight.org.

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