Predicting the Future
“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”
Surprise! Life has seemingly thrown you another curve ball. “How on earth did I end up here?” you might ask, or you might say, “I never could have seen that coming.” Sure enough, sometimes life does throw some unexpected things at us, and there is nothing we can do to prevent those things from happening. However, there are times when we look back at all the events that led up to a particular situation and we can see certain patterns of behaviour or decision-making that led us to that very moment. We might look back and say, “If only I had done something different.” Have you ever been in that situation? I certainly have.
What if, instead of looking back with hindsight and regret, we could have wisdom in the moment to make the right decisions to help us avoid future regret? James writes, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” We ought to pray and ask God for such wisdom.
I have been told several times, “You cannot predict the future.’ This might be true in some cases, but a lot of the time we can certainly make informed guesses (or theories) as to the trajectory of where things are headed, and I believe that Paul, in his letter to the Galatians, states just as much.
“A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”
What are the things that we prioritise in our lives? Not just the things that we say we prioritise, but the things that we actually prioritise – the things that we prioritise with our time, energy, and money. Are we investing in the things of the flesh? Are we sowing “to please the flesh”? Or are we sowing “to please the Spirit”? One leads to destruction, while the other leads to eternal life.
What is the example that we are setting for the next generation? What do they see? Do they see a people who genuinely love God with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength, and who genuinely love their neighbour as themselves? Or do they see something else? Do they see a people who are proud and selfish? Do they see a people who say one thing but then live an altogether different life? Do they see a people who say they are willing to take up their cross and follow Jesus, but then choose comfort and lavishness over inconvenience? What does how we live say to the next generation and what are we setting them up for? Destruction or eternal life?
In the words of Paul, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” What a promise! Don’t give up. Persevere. Pursue the things of the Spirit over the things of the flesh. The day of the harvest is coming. Let us reap eternal life – not just for ourselves, but for generations to come. If we need to change, then let us change. Let us do all we can, empowered by the Holy Spirit, to redirect one another from destruction.
We may not be able to predict all that the future holds. However, we can know that what we sow now will impact what we reap. The outcomes will be either destruction or eternal life (both for us and for those who follow). Let us not sow to please the flesh but rather let us sow to please the Spirit.
Keep trusting Jesus,