And so, 2012 was put in the rear view mirror this morning as the clock struck midnight. Across the world, the coming of the New Year was greeted with cheering, confetti, fireworks and kisses. We celebrated making it through another year.
However, New Year’s Eve is more than a celebration of the past. Its focus is really looking ahead with hopeful anticipation for all that we plan to accomplish in the coming year.
Do you know what you want to accomplish in 2013? Do you already have plans drawn up? If not, you need to begin now for one simple reason. You don’t know what the future has in store.
In the New Testament of the Bible, there were some individuals who were really getting caught up in planning out their future. Now, generally speaking we would say that planning is important and vital for our success in our life. These people, however, were demonstrating a spirit of pride, in that they believed they alone controlled their destiny. James, in his letter addresses their arrogance by saying:
“Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit’; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, ‘If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.’ But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.” (James 4:13-16)
What a powerful statement James makes about life. In the grand scheme of the universe, our lives are like a vapor…here one moment and gone the next. Ultimately, he says, we shouldn’t boast that we can control the events of tomorrow or pretend to know what will happen. Only if God wills do our plans come to fruition. In that sense then, these are not anti-planning verses from James. Rather, they are plan-with-the-right-perspective verses.
The further implication here is that, given the proper perspective, our plans should take on a sense of urgency. Because life is fragile, we need to plan like there is no tomorrow. As the unexpected violent incidences of the past year reminded us, your plan to make a routine trip to a mall, or the movies, or to your school may be the last thing you ever get to do in this life. It is a sobering reminder that God may call some of us home before the end of 2013.
What plans do you need to quickly jump on in 2013? Don’t drag your feet thinking you have all the time in the world to purchase that life insurance policy, write up your will or pursue that career you’ve always dreamed about. Go for it today for we do not know what will happen tomorrow.
Next Post: Fall in Love Again
Prior Post: Giving: Like Never Before