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Seeing New Possibilities

Posted: 8/19/19 at 4:00pm. Post by Tony Brooks.

“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. (Isaiah 43:18-19, NIV)

I love this passage, as it shares a hopeful future from a bleak past. God can help us see a new thing!

I recently posted part of this thought below on Facebook:

I am getting older each day. I realize my days ahead are statistically fewer in the future than my days before now. I have been dealing with a bad cold for over a week. I realize that I am overweight and have health issues. Perhaps that has called me to consider what happens afterwards here. As I consider my trip to heaven, what have I done to bring God’s Kingdom to Earth?

After making my way to Richmond for meetings, I had a chance to watch Aquaman on HBO at the hotel. Katrina and I had seen it at the theater. As many of you know, I love superheroes! Since my childhood I read comic books and watched the shows and the movies. (Superman will always be my favorite!)

I was reminded again tonight about something I believe in. We are called to be good stewards of the earth. Some don’t believe in global warming as a real thing. Evidence shows otherwise, but I won’t get into that here. The movie reminded me that we are given the challenge by God and responsible for the Earth, which includes the ocean.

As we prepare for the next generation, and as we leave this world, are we helping the next generation by being good stewards while we are here?

As I travel in Virginia and beyond, I know of very few churches recycling, seeking to help countries without clean water, and helping communities look to take care of our children’s and grandchildren’s future. I see fast food businesses using Styrofoam, plastic straws, and putting more in landfills without recycling. I wonder how many landfills that last for generations take up land and pollute our oceans and other water sources.

I go further in my reflection: Katrina and I will be cremated. I am not trying to provide a guilt trip for anyone or be morbid. I am asking what will happen to all the land when we have so many gravesites? Churches with graveyards are bound by law to take care of them even after the church closes. Why do we spend so much time on the dead and less time on the living generations for the future? I am simply asking you to consider the future.

Finally, we have many churches that will struggle to make it in the next 20 years. As we prepare for the next generation, and as we leave this world, are we helping the next generation by being good stewards while we are here? Yes, this may seem like a dark post, but it doesn’t have to be!

Ask me (my email is tony.brooks@bgav.org) how to help your members think about the next generations in the following areas:

Sunday School classes can start recycling at your church. If you do, let me know. I can share a story to help your church’s mission projects while recycling!

Sunday School classes can help your members to think about being good stewards when they leave this world. Every person who needs help with being good stewards to prepare for leaving this world, please contact me. 

Sunday School classes: How are you helping to bring God’s goodness to earth? In other words: how are you sharing God’s love, helping people in need and seeking to make things right in our society? Let me know what you are doing. If you want to partner in other parts of the world to help bring clean water, or better health for persons dealing with malaria and other challenges, let me know.  

I know times are tough in our world with many problems. I always tend to spend my energy on bringing hope. How about you?

George Bernard Shaw once said: “You see things; you say, ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were; and I say, ‘Why not?’”

Robert F. Kennedy shared Shaw’s quote this way: “Some people see things as they are and say: Why? I dream of things that never were and say, ‘Why Not?’”

Let’s say, Why not? Let’s dream new dreams and seek a new future together. God will show us the way!

 

Brooks-TonyTony Brooks is our Sunday School/Discipleship Specialist and Field Strategist for the Southside Region. You may email him at tony.brooks@bgav.org. Follow Tony on Twitter: @TonyBrooks7