Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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Living Today in Light of the Future
by Tom Goodman
March 18, 2009

Join us for the Lord's Supper on Thursday, April 9, 7pm.
Attend our Good Friday service during your lunch break, April 10, noon.

Celebrate Christ's resurrection on Sunday, April 12, 10am.

Stephen Covey said the first habit of highly effective people is to begin with the end in mind.  If you know clearly the results you want, you're more likely to use your resources more effectively today.

In a way, that's why you should study biblical prophecy.  That's the ultimate way to begin with the end in mind!  But we should study the biblical picture of the future not to create it but to adjust to it.

The disciples once asked Jesus, "What will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?" (Matthew 24)  Jesus answered them, and we'll look at his teaching this Sunday at 10am.  But, just as important, we'll look at how to live today in light of events in the future.

In other words, life can start working better today if you'll begin with the end in mind.

Take verses 6-8 of Matthew 24, for example.  There Jesus warned that before his return nature and society will become unstable.  How do we live today in light of that truth?  By putting our highest trust only in things that will endure.  If the last years of our history will be a time of instability in the natural order and the social order, then we should not be disillusioned when we get glimpses of that same instability now.  It's time we learned to put our trust only in the kingdom of God.

There's more about the future from Christ's teaching in Matthew 24, and all of it applies to how you should live now.

The thought of Christ's return motivated the first Christians to make the right moral choices, to be patient, and to keep their faith during persecution.  Because it so deeply impacted their view of life, they often referred to their Lord's return in scripture.  There are more than 500 references to the return of Christ, and they occur in 23 of the 27 books in the New Testament; in fact, his return is mentioned on nearly every page of the New Testament.

The Apostle Paul even summarized the expectations of the Christian life as simply "to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven" (1 Thessalonians 1:9-10).

This Sunday at 10am, you can learn how to make that a perfect description of your own life!

Weblog:  Check out my blog, "Get Anchored."  Some things to look for...

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