I had a member of staff come to me one day with a request to adjust her workload. After giving me what must have been a hundred reasons why I should accede to her request, she asked how I was going to sort it out. I told her to leave with me and I would get it sorted.

But that wasn’t enough for her, she wanted to know the details, she wanted to have a timeline, she basically wanted to know the ‘how, what, when and where’ of what I was about to do. So I spent the next half hour telling her. And guessed what happened?

She felt that my plan was too far-fetched and involved too many people. So she went and tried to negotiate a better deal with the other Department Heads on her own accord; and ended up with a worse arrangement.

That ever happen to you? You ask for something, you are dying to know how it is going to be realized, so you are told; but when that happens, you think it’s not good enough, you can do better, and so you try and manipulate it your way.

If all of the above pretty much describes you, don’t feel bad. You’re not alone. Throughout history, man has been trying to find out what’s coming in life. In the good ol’ days, there were magic men who went by many names. But no matter what they were called, their job was always the same, predict tomorrow, so that their masters can change it today.

And if you think that that was only an obsession with people in the past, guess what, didn’t Michael J Fox try and go back to the future 3 times? And every time that happened, he didn’t really solve the problem did he? Most of the time he just made it worse.

So if you are given to gazing into a crystal ball every now and then, here’s some friendly advice for you. Stop. It’s pointless, really. Apart from the fact that that crystal ball is just going to refract light and do nothing more, we also need to realize that we are all part of a chain of events, a chain that once adjusted, will change the course of the future in untold ways. Let me give you an over-simplified example.

In a village there were 3 people, a dying old man, his son and an undertaker. Now, because the village had only 3 people left, the undertaker’s business was understandably affected and so, if he did not make that one last sale, his business would go under. As for the dying old man, his medical condition was completely preventable. Less fat in his diet and more exercise would have prevented his current situation. So imagine what these three men would do if they had the chance to know their future, or go back into the past to change it?

The old man’s son would probably get his father to exercise and watch his diet, yes? But if they were successful in altering the old man’s lifestyle, then the undertaker’s business would go under. Or perhaps the undertaker would go back in time and open a diner to ensure that the old man had no chance of getting healthy food; and we all know where that would lead.

So from a secular point of view, leaving the Christian ‘mumbo jumbo’ out of the discussion for now, it really is pointless to know the future, because we are not disciplined enough to let it happen. We will want to change it, to make it better, so that we can lead better lives. But if we do that, there’s more than a real chance that we will screw things up. So what do we do?

Well beloved child of God, because you are the beloved child of God, there is nothing that needs to be done. As Jesus told the Pharisees about the tax,

“Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” Mark 12:17

But what does it mean, I hear you ask; how does it apply? Well, it’s simple, really. Remember what Jesus said about the coin?

“..And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?” They said to Him, “Caesar’s.”” Mark 12:16

So whose inscription is on your life? Whose image is stamped onto you?

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness;…” Genesis 1:26

That’s right. God’s image is stamped onto us. Or to be more accurate, we are made in His image, our Father’s image, that means that we are His. So when we say render to God what is God’s, we are really saying, acknowledge that He’s got charge over us, His ‘image’ is on our face; so if we fail, guess who’s going to look bad?

But in truth, I’m not being flippant here. Because we need to remember why we were created.

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”” Genesis 1:26

We were created to have dominion over all that our Father has given us. That we have abused that dominion, is another sermon for another day. But that’s not all.

“Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”” Genesis 1:28

Not only are we to have dominion, we are also to be fruitful and multiply.

Now I know that there are some of us who will be literal about this and say that all God is talking about is procreation. But to these people, I put it to you that the interpretation for ‘fruitful’, ‘multiply’ and ‘dominion’ is a lot wider than that, because when God put Adam in the garden, His command was not ‘go make babies’,

“Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.” Genesis 2:15

Tend and keep it. That means look after it and take it as one’s own possession. For what end?

“And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat;…” Genesis 2:16

That’s right, to benefit from it, to enjoy it, to reap blessings from it. So to therefore say that we are also to multiply our joy in being fruitful in what we do, isn’t really such a far-fetched idea, is it?

So, we were created to enjoy all the bounty of God’s creation. That is the purpose for our existence. That the world has messed that up, and we find ourselves in a bit of a mess, that doesn’t change the fact that we were created to enjoy our Father’s gifts and commanded to be fruitful and multiply.

Beloved child of God, because we have our Father’s stamp on us, because we were made in His image, we really don’t need to know what’s coming. All we need to do is remember that;

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

He’s got our lives all figured out, it’s all been planned, He’s got it covered. But if you’re feeling a little troubled by what’s happening in your life, if you’re feeling a little jittery because you can’t see the end of your tunnel, don’t worry, for

“Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:12-13

Yes, He will listen. If you look for Him and tell Him your troubles, You will find Him and He will listen. And not just that,

“I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will bring you back from your captivity;…” Jeremiah 29:14

So what are you held captive by? Physical pain? Emotional sorrow? Debt? Troubles at work? Bad boss? Take heart, beloved child of God. Our Father’s got a plan, a plan to give you a future and a hope.

And if you’re feeling a little down, seek Him, go to Him, look up to the heavens and tell Him all that you are feeling; for you will find Him and He will listen; and He will bring you back from your captivity into the Eden which He had planned for you to be in right from the very beginning.

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