3 Part Series: Being Thankful for the Past, Present and Future

Continuing on with the 3-part series: Being Thankful for the Past, Present and Future let’s recap the last two weeks. We put on our pirate’s hat and set out in search of thankful treasures from our past and in the present. Even with a broken, painful past or a present day challenging situation we uncovered something to be thankful for. But what about our future…can we be thankful for a future we have yet to know?

Part 3: Dare to Be Thankful for the Future

Maybe you’re asking, “How can I be thankful for the future when I have no idea what it’ll be?” And that is a great question! Prior to today, I never really put much thought into thankfulness for the future. Rather, I have spent most of my time worrying about it. But could I find thankfulness for the future? Could a mindful thankfulness for the future help to alleviate my worry-wart spirit? Once again, put on your pirate’s hat, grab your journal and let’s find out.

 Truths About Future Day Thankfulness

Thankful for Not Knowing the Future

TRUTH: 

God created humans to live in the present. We were not made to know everything, but to trust God and have faith. There are things in our future that if we knew them, we couldn’t handle it. It is God’s protection that he created us to walk by faith. Just think of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane…He sweat blood because He knew the future.  Soon He would endure bearing the sins of the world by a painful death on the cross. Could you have handled that kind of future knowledge and still gone through with it?

RESPONSE:

Knowing the future is something I have longed for, thinking it would solve all my decision-making problems, worries and doubts. But, I now realize that the burden would be too great. Knowing the future would be knowing both the good and the bad, and that could influence decisions I would later regret.  For example, during my last pregnancy I almost died (read the story here).  Had I known that was going to happen might I have changed my mind?  And if I did, I would be missing out on raising an amazing little girl who has been nothing but a blessing. I am thankful that God protected my mind and spirit by limiting my knowledge of the future.

“But I am trusting you, O’ Lord, saying, ‘You are my God! My future is in your hands.” Psalms 31:14-15

Thankful That God Goes Before Me

TRUTH: 

God is everywhere and He exists outside of space and time.  He sees our entire life from beginning to end. This is hard for the human brain to comprehend. Because God is omnipresent, He goes before us and He prepares us for what is to come.

RESPONSE:

I have taken great comfort in times of hardship in knowing that God goes before me.  Because He knows what is to come, He is qualified to lead and guide me. When difficult situations arise I repeat this motto, “God knew this was coming and because He knew it, He has prepared me in advance to walk though it.” I am thankful that I don’t need to worry because God prepares me for the future.

“You chart the path ahead of me and tell me where to stop and rest. Every moment you know where I am.” Psalm 139:3

Thankful for God’s Guidance  

TRUTH: 

The Bible is filled with verses about God’s guidance for those who believe. He never planned for us to walk through life without Him. When we turn our attention to Him, He provides wisdom, discernment and direction for the future. Not everything will be easy.  In fact, we are told by Jesus, “in this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). But we are not left to face the future alone. It is guaranteed if you seek God…you will find Him!

RESPONSE:

The future can be scary and I often worry about tomorrow. On my own I have good reason to be worried. But when I seek God, I can rest assured knowing He is leading and guiding me into my future. He will not hold back on giving me the wisdom and courage I need to take each next step. I am thankful that I can be confident in God’s guidance for my future.

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21

Thankful that One Day I Will See Clearly

TRUTH: 

God made humans to only see partially. We are limited and have cloudy vision. While we are on earth, we will not know all that God has and is…that is God’s design.  But one day, we will get the whole picture.  One day the cloud will be lifted and we will see fully.  Life will make sense and we will understand the mysteries of life. Now that is something about the future to be thankful for!

RESPONSE:

I have struggled with not knowing or understanding life. Feeling incomplete and always asking why. It brings comfort to know one day I will understand.  One day the blinders will be removed and I will be made whole. I am thankful that I can look forward to the day I will see clearly.

“Now we see things imperfectly as in a poor mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God knows me now.” 1 Corinthians 13:12

Thankful that I Will Not Face Death Alone

TRUTH: 

Death is a scary subject for everyone.  The time will come for every living person to pass from this life into eternity. While it is frightening and no amount of courage or strength can prepare us to defeat death…it is an inevitable part of human life.  We can rest assured knowing that we will not be alone.  The Bible tells us that God will be with us as we pass though the dark valley of death and into the light of eternity.  We can be thankful that in death we will not be alone.

RESPONSE:

I wish I could ask someone who has gone before me what it was like to die.  However impossible that wish is…I do believe the Bible and the promise that God will be with me when I pass from this life to the next.  The Bible also says that to be absent from the body is to be present with God (2 Corinthians 5:8).  When I look into the future and fear the process of dying, I receive comfort in knowing that God will be with me.  I am thankful for that!!

“Even though I walk through the dark valley of death, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and staff protect and comfort me.” Psalm 23:4

Thankful that Eternity is My Guaranteed Future!

TRUTH: 

For all Christ-believers, eternity is guaranteed (John 3:16)! Jesus has gone and prepared a place for us and it has many rooms (John 14:2-3).  Our citizenship is not this world but in Heaven (Philippians 3:20-21).  Our future in this world is unknown but our future in Heaven is known.  We will be with Him and that is the best reason to be thankful for the future!!

RESPONSE:

Great confidence and thanksgiving pour out knowing Heaven is my final destination! In this life I have troubles, doubts, and fears.  I am imperfect and broken. BUT, my God has something better in store for me…I can look to the future with hope and have strength for today because my future is secured and guaranteed by the blood of Christ!

“And now you have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you.  And when you believed in Christ he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom He promised long ago. The Sprit of God’s is a guarantee that He will give you everything He promised and that he has purchased us to be His own people.  This is just one more reason for us to praise our glorious God.” Ephesians 1:13-14

Dare to Be Thankful for the Future

Maybe prior to reading this you never thought about being thankful for the future. How do you feel about it now? I am pumped-up! When I consider that my future is secured in Christ, God goes before me, He guides me, I will not face death alone and my guaranteed future is in Heaven…WOW!

Let’s finish the Thankful Challenge– Grab your notes from the last two weeks and write out your responses to -Thankful for:

  • Not knowing the future
  • God going before me
  • God guiding me
  • One day seeing clearly
  • Not being alone in death
  • Guaranteed future in Heaven

If you missed the first  or second part of the 3-Part Series: Being Thankful for the Past, Present and Future you can click here: Dare to Be Thankful for the Past   and Dare to Be Thankful for the Present.

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

Sincerely with Hugs,

JJ

#FindYourBrave, #FindYourThankfulness

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