What Kind of Future Do You Envision?

The other day I read a story about the relationship between actor Michael Douglas and his father, legendary actor Kirk Douglas. Michael Douglas is 65 and Kirk Douglas is 93. Kirk Douglas has been in 80 movies. Michael Douglas is a star in his own right.
When Michael Douglas was 65 years old, he had both knees replaced. One day his dad called to check on him. Michael Douglas told him that he had been in some pain since the surgery. His father told him, “Michael, I was 88 when I had my knees replaced.” Michael said that he knew he could say no more.

Imagine being 65 years old, a grandfather, and having your father check on you after your knee replacement surgery.
I doubt that either one of these men could have envisioned this in their future.
Maybe it is difficult to envision your own future. I know it is for me. I really don’t have a clue about the details of my future. Yet, I do want to enter the future on purpose. I want to be a certain kind of person.

For example, I would like to enter the future, whether tomorrow or five years from now, with these characteristics in my life:

1. Missional. This summer, I am focused thinking and reading about the “big story” of Scripture. God has been doing something in this world since creation and he has not quit doing it yet. He now invites us all to be a part of the mission of God in this world. He will one day bring everything to a grand culmination and it will be good.

2. An Instrument of Blessing. During the course of an ordinary day, I want to ask: “Today, what can I do to bless those who are in my presence?” Are people blessed by your presence where you work? Is God working through you to bless others? If someone goes to lunch with you, are they blessed by your presence? Some people do not bless. Instead the are a real pain to be with. They whine and complain. They are rude and obnoxious and then act as if they did nothing wrong. Some people want to be with others for what they can get, not what they can give.

I would like to be the kind of person who is refreshing to be with. In fact, I would like to be a person who others find energizing and encouraging.

3. A Positive Cheerful Attitude. I can’t exaggerate the importance of having a positive, cheerful attitude–in spite of the circumstances. Attitude is incredibly important. I once knew a church leader was actually quite knowledgable on many fronts. However, his attitude was so foul that he was more discouraging than encouraging to those in his presence. On the other hand, it is possible to brighten a room by having a good attitude.


What about you? As you envision the future, what would you like to characterize your life?   



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2 thoughts on “What Kind of Future Do You Envision?

  1. I really like your list. Though adding ‘wisdom’ to it seems like a too-obvious-to-mention #4, I realize how essential to aging well it is. There is no fool worse than an old fool.