When Your Picture Of The Future Fades

When Your Picture Of The Future Fades

As leaders, we know it’s important to have an image or picture of the future we are trying to create. This image is created in response to the question “What will the future look like if things are running as planned?”

This applies to all aspects of life, from finishing school, to building a career or business, to even forming a family.

When a man and woman decide to get married, they imagine their future together and can describe it in vivid detail.

  • Owning a white house on a corner lot, in a quiet neighborhood.
  • Driving a nice new car that’s sporty, but can easily seat 4 people.
  • Having two (or three) healthy kids, who are smart!
  • Enjoying annual vacations, exploring various beautiful beaches together.

There’s nothing wrong with such a lovely picture of the future. But then comes real life where many challenges arise. This is when the original picture fades and sometimes is even replaced with a different, darker kind of image that portrays constant worry, emptiness, and even hopelessness.

  • The house needs a new roof, and the garage door is broken.
  • The car is old and needs repairs, and there’s no money to fix it.
  • Surprise, there’s twins! And the doctor believes one of the children has a heart condition.
  • Vacation? That may not be possible for a long time (if ever).

Life is hard. There’s no doubt about it.

This is where many marriages crumble because both husband and wife remain solely focused on the daily grind of problem solving with no connection to the original vision, or creating a new and better one. Even the children are impacted as they grow up in an environment of tension, hurt, and anger because there is no picture of a future.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.

Focus On What Truly Matters

It’s here that Jesus exemplifies the perfect leadership response we can all learn from, reminding us to remain focused on what truly matters:

 “But take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with… cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly.” – Luke 21:34 NKJV

His reference to “that Day” is the great day when He will return. No matter what cares of life may be thrown our way, we always have a future and a hope. We wait for the day that Jesus will return!

we always have a future and a hope

Consider the promise Jesus made to prepare a place for us to be with HIM:

“And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” – John 14:3 NKJV

Apostle Paul also nicely reminds us:

“For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” – Philippians 3:20 NKJV

Everything in our life – the good and not-so-good – is about our future with the Lord. He is preparing us for something special.

It’s all about HIS picture of the future.

To illustrate this point, there’s a story about a man who walks past a church under construction, where he sees a stonemason fashioning a stone on the ground.  The man asks, “What are you doing with that stone?” The stonemason replies, “I am shaping it down here, so that it fits up there” (pointing to the steeple above).

Just imagine the incredible work that God is doing on each and every one of us - down here on earth - as He fashions and shapes us so that we will fit perfectly into His picture of the future.  

“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 NKJV

So, when you are living through some of life’s toughest challenges and your picture of the future seems to be fading, think about God’s picture of the future.  It’s perfect. It’s beautiful. And it’s designed to include everyone in your family! 


Read more like this:

When to Begin a Family Vision (Blog)

Explore a Better Understanding of Your Spouse (Blog)

How to Prioritize Marriage in the Busy Seasons of Life (Podcast)



Robert and Lori Ferguson

Robert & Lori Ferguson are best friends who have been married for 30-plus years. Their mission is to encourage husbands and wives to lead meaningful lives. Read more at EncourageYourSpouse.com.