One of my favorite places to be is mowing our field about an hour before dusk. Just a few days ago, I had been mowing for a few hours in the scorching South Georgia heat when the sun began to set, the refreshing breeze blew through my hair and I began to give thanks. It seemed to be the perfect time of day and the perfect temperature. I enjoy God’s creation and the wonder of it: the beautiful blue skies with pillow clouds; the shade of tall pines and pecan trees; crickets and grasshoppers hurrying out of my way in the tall grass; deer going to the feeder; the small turtle on its way across the drive; the cows in the pasture across the road in the green, sloping field; the smell of fresh cut grass; the breeze giving relief from the hot sun.
You may be asking what that has to do with building a future on a firm foundation. In that short paragraph, I have identified two things about myself that can help establish some goals and guidelines for achieving those goals:
- I believe in creation by a living, almighty God Who hears me and cares about my heart’s desires, even so much as to send a breeze my way just because He knows how much I love it. How much more He must care about the decisions I make for my future and the future of those I love. As a believer in the Creator, I also believe in absolutes. God is the absolute authority of right and wrong, good and bad. I have complete trust in His Word and the Truth He has provided for my life.
- I enjoy nature and being outside in my own space. Although much of my time is inside, I really want to have time in my space. So, in planning my future, I should bring that forward as a goal to maintain or preserve that lifestyle.
We should recognize those moments in our lives that give us pleasure, and identify important information to help us plan our future – not only for the next 100 years or so, but also for eternity:
*Prepare for your future here and beyond: We spend so much of our time preparing for retirement that may not ever come, and so little time planning for eternity that is certain to come. No one can escape death and eternity. We should plan for today, tomorrow, and forever.
*Provide for your loved ones: If you live beyond 100 years of age or die in the next week, your plan should provide for those you love. If you have a spouse and or children dependent on your income, what is the plan if that income is lost due to disability or death?
*Preserve lifestyle: How will you maintain your lifestyle when you are no longer willing or able to work (i.e., save large portion of income and live small to accumulate wealth earlier instead of later; retire later or not at all)?
*Protect legacy: Planning for passing your estate to others once you are no longer here is important.
I Timothy 6:17-21 (KJV)
17) Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; 18) That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; 19) Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life. 20) O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: 21) Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. Grace be with thee. Amen.