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Tag Archives: planning for the future

When a Shooting Star Falls to Earth

As a teenager, watching for shooting stars was something that you incorporated into a date. Like Inspiration Point on the hit show Happy Days, actual seeing a shooting star illicits an immediate bond between couples. However, the Bible speaks of a shooting star that doesn’t fully burn up. This particular star called Wormwood falls to earth and causes issues with the water supplies worldwide.

The third angel blew [his] trumpet, and a huge star fell from heaven, burning like a torch, and it dropped on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water—Revelation 8:10

Wormwood is a byproduct of the 7 tribulations in the book of Revelation. Based upon John’s vision, the remains of this fallen star polluted 1/3 of the earth’s water supply. In a metaphorical sense based upon Jeremiah 9:15 and Lamentations 3:15, Wormword refers to bitter calamity and sorrow brought upon the earth. John points out that many people died from drinking and or using this contaminated water.

And the name of the star is Wormwood. A third part of the waters was changed into wormwood, and many people died from using the water, because it had become bitter, Revelation 8:11.

This event in the Bible reminds me of words written by Jesus’ earthly brother James. Writing to Christians scattered throughout the world following Nero’s persecution, there is a warning for anyone who is consumed about planning for the future, James 4:13-14. Life is too short to get stressed out about what tomorrow will bring. Therefore, live for today before the events of tomorrow changes your world forever.

by Jay Mankus


When You’re the Fool

A foolish person is associated with silly, imprudent or unwisely actions. Observers of this behavior often label these individuals as buffoons, dunces, idiots or my personal favorite, ignoramus. Unfortunately, everyone plays the fool at some point in life. The sad part is when you’re the fool, pride can blind you the realization of past bonehead decisions that you’ve made.

He who willfully separates and estranges himself [from God and man] seeks his own desire and pretext to break out against all wise and sound judgment. A [self-confident] fool has no delight in understanding but only in revealing his personal opinions and himself, Proverbs 18:1-2.

King Solomon draws an interesting parallel in the passage above. Considered one of the wisest leaders of his era in history, people came from throughout the Middle East to hear Solomon speak. Solomon refers to foolishness as a spiritual condition. Anyone who denies God’s existence, Romans 1:20-21, misses the invisible and visible signs of the Creator of earth. A fool becomes so self absorbed that their understanding is limited.

And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have many good things laid up, [enough] for many years. Take your ease; eat, drink, and enjoy yourself merrily. 20 But God said to him, You fool! This very night they [the messengers of God] will demand your soul of you; and all the things that you have prepared, whose will they be? – Luke 12:19-20

One of Jesus’ parables blames foolishness on complacency. After spending years of building up a successful business, the owner of this storehouse got too comfortable. Instead of retiring and spending the rest of his life living in luxury, Jesus suggests that this man will die of a heart attack before leaving a will. Subsequently, the wealth this man accumulated throughout life would be wasted due to a lack of planning. Thus, the sooner you acknowledge foolish behavior, the quicker you can turn your life around before it’s too late to change.

by Jay Mankus

Beyond Measure

As I child, I enjoyed counting rare coins that my parents collected.  Placing our families spare change into a large jar located on a counter next to the main entrance, this giant piggy bank usually took a month or so to fill.  Once full, each coin was sorted on our kitchen table, separating the regular quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies from the valuable ones based upon dates and where each was minted.   Before the internet, large navy blue notebooks provided collectors with important informing above a coin sized filling system to hold each valuable coin, carefully pressed into place by my father.  Since I was the youngest, I was relegated the task of sorting the least valuable, but most common.  Though my family didn’t have much in my early years, we were frugal, savoring every penny.

Since Australia, Canada and New Zealand have recently phased out their version of the penny, American coin enthusiasts fear its days are numbered.  The cost of inflation might persuade leaders to discontinue the penny as it costs more to make than its actual worth.  If the penny is taken out of circulation, citizens, government officials and retailers are going have to develop a new way of measuring currency or simply round items up to the nearest nickel.  Since the days of 50 cent gas, 25 cent meals and 15 cent movie theater tickets are in our rear view mirror, the penny is on the verge of extinction.

During the days when Pharaoh reigned over Egypt, there was a 7 year period of bountiful harvests.  As a result, store houses went built around the fields in each city of Egypt, overseen by the governor Joseph.  According to Genesis 41:49, the yield from each area throughout the country was so plentiful, Joseph stopped counting since it was beyond measure.  This planning saved countless lives, serving as a security blanket during one of the worst 7 year drought Egypt ever faced.  Without Joseph’s insight from God, millions of people from the Middle East might have starved to death.

Whenever times are going well, people often forget to stop and give thanks to the Lord for their daily bread.  Success can result in pride, causing one to give yourself more credit than you deserve.  Yet, when famine or trials strike unexpectedly, God is usually the first to be blamed.  Instead of taking responsibility or blaming yourself for missing obvious signs from the Lord, the sinful mind distorts your perspective, Romans 8:5-8.  Beyond the measurements human beings make as well as previous judgments made by others, don’t forgot the James 1:17 principle.  Come to the realization that God is beyond measure; seeing yourself as a humble servant, trying to find your place in this world, Job 42:1-6.

by Jay Mankus

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