At times in my life I have looked back on what used to be and longed for those days. Recently I was thinking of the house where I spent a good part of my childhood. Those were great years, riding my bicycle all around town, exploring in the woods, going to my best friend’s house for sleepovers. Those were the simple, carefree childhood days. But those don’t have to be the best days. The best days are ahead.
God wants us to have hope for the future, and, of course, joy for today.
Someday I hope to take my wife back to the place of my childhood. I want her to see where I grew up and be able to share those memories with her. But I doubt I will ever live in that town again. I can’t turn back the clock and relive those days. And that’s okay.
There have been times in recent years where I've struggled significantly with the direction of my life. I felt stuck in my job, it seemed I couldn’t leave if I wanted to. I think, at times, I was a bit frantic, thinking I had to figure out something to do with my life. I wanted to do something of significance. I felt like Joseph in the prison, the Lord was with me, but it seemed like little was changing for the good. My discouragement, at times, and sense of disappointment was deep and debilitating. It has clouded my whole view of life.
But today is a new day. God has brought about changes in my life in this last year that have given me a fresh hope for the future. About a year ago I was promoted in my job. The pay, though not super-great, is better than I’ve ever made. I met my beautiful wife, Leslie, and now I have hope that we will start a family, that I will be a father, and that our family will serve God in ministry. God has also given me a fresh sense of direction regarding my career and my calling. Things are not perfect, but, things are better.
The oft-quoted verse in Jeremiah says, “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” (vs. 11) No matter how good things were in the past, or how bad things may have been, we can believe that the best days are ahead. My prayer for you today is that God will give you fresh vision for the future. I pray that God will “give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you…” (Ephesians 1:17-18)
The best days are ahead!