Posts Tagged ‘Future

03
Aug
18

Pressing On Toward Heaven

We all go through various troubles, trials and tests in this life. Followers of Jesus are not exempt. It would be nice if God would bestow a kind of “most favored nation” status on us, but He doesn’t promise a pain-free life for anyone. He promises something else – Heaven. Paul wrote:

Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 3:13-14 (NIV)

There’s kind of a past, present and future thing going on in these verses. Paul chose to forget the past while pressing on in the present toward an amazing future in Heaven. We would all do well to follow His example. Forget about the past while pressing on in the present toward an amazing future. This is how we can get through the troubles, trials and tests of life. Keep your eyes on Heaven where Jesus waits for you.

Advertisements
08
Jan
18

What’s Next: Looking Forward

The latest message from Griffith First Christian Church in Griffith, Indiana. This message is based on Philippians 3:12-21 and is about the future of our church family in 2018.

14
Apr
16

The Good Ol’ Days

Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these?”
For it is not wise to ask such questions.  (Ecclesiastes 7:10, NIV)
As human beings, we look back at our lives from time to time and we reminisce.  We spend way too much time pondering the past and not enough time playing in the present or focusing on our future.  There are some good things about pondering the past.  First, we can learn from our mistakes.  We all fail from time to time and we make mistakes.  Why repeat them when we can learn from them?  Second, we can remember the days when the Lord carried us and got us through difficult times.  This can help us lean on Him and trust Him with our futures.
But when we linger too long in the past and compare the present times to the good ol’ days, there is no wisdom in that.  We cannot make the good ol’ days reoccur, so make the best of the present and plan for the future.  In Philippians 3:13-14 (NIV) Paul wrote, “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”  No matter how good the good ol’ days were, they are nothing compared to what is ahead of God’s people.  Read the words of 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NIV)
“No eye has seen,
no ear has heard,
no mind has conceived
what God has prepared for those who love him”
Jesus has gone to prepare a place for His followers and it is indescribable.  We cannot even comprehend what that place will be like.  The good ol’ days are done and gone.  But the future is glorious!  So let us press on to that future!  Press on, my friends!  Press on!
PRAYER: Thank You for Your promises, O Lord.  I look forward to the day when Jesus returns to take us home.  Help me to press on and persevere when life gets hard today.  In Jesus’ name, amen.
25
Sep
15

The Future Holder

James 4:13-17 (NIV)
Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” 16 As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil. 17 If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.
 
We all make plans.  We all have hopes and dreams.  We have different goals and we try to determine our own destinies.  James says that this is arrogant and goes so far as to say that it is evil.  Why?  Because we have no reason to be so arrogant.  We have NO IDEA what the future holds.  We can say that we want to do this or that.  We can say that we’re going to go here or there.  James says that we cannot possibly know these things.
He compares our lives to a mist or vapor.  I once heard that you should imagine a pot of boiling water.  Our lives are like the steam that rises above that pot.  It’s there one moment and you don’t see it the next.  This is what James says our lives are like.  Here one moment and we’re gone the next.  
We delude ourselves in two ways.  First, we think to ourselves, “I’ve got all the time in the world!”  This is foolish because we really don’t.  If the vapor disappears, so shall we.  Second, we think, “I’m in control of my future.”  This is arrogant and prideful.  Only God knows the future and He is the One who holds it in His hands.  Instead of making our plans, we need to submit to God’s will.  Our prayer should always be, “Thy will be done.”  It is the safest prayer to pray.  God’s will is for our best.  He knows what He’s doing and when we surrender control of our lives to Him, He will lead us to where we want to be and that is with Jesus for all eternity.  Jesus knows the way because Jesus is the Way.  Instead of bragging and boasting about our own knowledge or control, let’s submit to the control of the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.  The Holy Spirit will lead and guide us and we’ll end up where we truly desire to be.
 
PRAYER: Father, I lift my voice to You today and simply say, “Thy will be done.”  I surrender to Your leading and to Your way.  I know that I will try to control my future, but in reality it is in Your hands.  Help me to surrender control of my life to You.  In the name of Jesus I pray, amen.
23
Apr
15

Ah Yes, The Good Old Days

Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these?”
    For it is not wise to ask such questions. – Ecclesiastes 7:10 (NIV)

There is a great comfort in reminiscing.  We think about “the good old days” and it brings warmth to our hearts.  We play, “Remember when?” and it brings a smile to our faces.  “Do you remember when gas was 19 cents a gallon?”  “Do you remember when we were kids and we didn’t have to worry about the things kids have to worry about today?”  “Why can’t we do this like we used to do back in the good old days?”  Solomon says, “Stop living in the past.”
Why would he say this?  Why does he say that is unwise to look back and ask, “Why can’t it be like it was back in the good old days?”  Because, as Billy Joel once sang, “The good ole days weren’t always good…” (Keeping the Faith).  Solomon had written earlier in Ecclesiastes that there is nothing new under the sun.  Yesterday, today and tomorrow aren’t really all that different.  At least, they’re not as different as we’d like to think that they are.
So what can we do to “forget the past and strain toward the future” (Philippians 3:13, paraphrase)?  First, we have to stop looking over our shoulders.  The past isn’t  coming back.  The past has passed and if you continue to live in it, you’ll miss so much in life.  Second, we need to understand the present times.  We live in amazing times and, as that great theologian Ferris Bueller once said, “…if you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”  So enjoy the day God has given you and look for opportunities to do His will and share His love with those who need it.  Third, remember your future.  God has a bright and glorious future for His people.  Keep your eyes on Heaven as you run the race of life.  Follow Jesus today, for He is the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6).
Ecclesiastes 7:7-12 (NIV)

Extortion turns a wise person into a fool,
    and a bribe corrupts the heart.

The end of a matter is better than its beginning,
    and patience is better than pride.
Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit,
    for anger resides in the lap of fools.

10 Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these?”
    For it is not wise to ask such questions.

11 Wisdom, like an inheritance, is a good thing
    and benefits those who see the sun.
12 Wisdom is a shelter
    as money is a shelter,
but the advantage of knowledge is this:
    Wisdom preserves those who have it.

08
Jul
13

Sentimental Journey

The sermon from Griffith First Christian Church from July 7, 2013.

Sentimental Journey from Shawn Cornett on Vimeo.

06
Nov
12

Do You Have A Future Hope?

I don’t know about you, but I sometimes struggle with jealousy.  I can be jealous and envious of those who live lives of moral degradation and wickedness.  Sounds crazy, right?
Proverbs 24 addresses this issue in a couple of verses:

Do not envy wicked men,
do not desire their company; (Proverbs 24:1, NIV)

Do not fret because of evil men
or be envious of the wicked,
for the evil man has no future hope,
and the lamp of the wicked will be snuffed out. (Proverbs 24:19-20, NIV)

It is easy to become jealous of the wicked.  Those who couldn’t care less about Jesus or the things of Christianity.  Those who live for the party 24/7.  Those who seem to succeed and prosper and never give God a 2nd thought.  Those who just party their way through life and don’t care about eternal things.  They look like they’re having the time of their lives!  They get high, get drunk and sleep around like Judgment Day will never come.  We might be tempted to think to ourselves, “It’s not fair!  I try to live a faithful, righteous life and yet I struggle to get by!”  Don’t be jealous!  There is more to life than just the here and now.  Don’t be envious!  It’s not as great as you might think it is.  Look at verse 20: “the evil man has no future hope…” (Proverbs 24:20, NIV).  The hope of the righteous is eternal life with Christ in Heaven.  That is our hope!  Nothing can compare with that!  I remember a time in my life when I was the prodigal son.  For many months I partied my way through life.  I was always looking for the next party.  I quit going to church.  I stopped praying.  I lived for the party of the moment.  Do you know what?  I was miserable.  My hope was fading.  The party doesn’t satisfy the eternal longing of the soul.  It only gratifies the temporary desires of the flesh.  When you wake up with a million regrets, you realize just how hopeless you’ve become.  But for the believer in Christ, to wake up each new day with hope is a wonderful gift!  To know that His mercies are new every morning.  That the sins of yesterday are washed away in the freshness of the dawn.  That there are no regrets for we are saved by the unfathomable depths of God’s grace.  What an amazing hope!
My challenge to you this weekend is to walk in hope.  May the hope that comes from knowing Jesus as your Savior fill you with hope each day.  May you know that what looks like greener grass is nothing but Astroturf.  It looks nice and green, but in reality, it’s fake.  My friends, we are bound for Heaven, so keep your eyes on Jesus.  May the things of this world grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace…



%d bloggers like this: