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Quotes of the Day for December 22, 2020 – Thoughts on living for the future or from the future

“What does it mean to live in hope? It means to live “from” the future. That is, we do not have life in its fullness in the trials of what now is. We have the fullness of life in the expectation of what is to be. Our celebration of the Incarnation, therefore, has meaning in the light of our hope. And our hope is the salvation that is now ours in part by faith but will be ours in its entirety when Christ returns to fulfill the glorious promises of our inheritance.” (Fr. Basil)

“Another paradox involves what we call “eschatology,” the doctrine of “last things.”…First, because it deals with what is to come rather than with the past or present, which means it requires us to make a clear distinction between what God has revealed about the future and what is merely human conjecture. The future is not “historical,” so it can’t be subject to normal modes of historical analysis. Prophecy tends to move from the present to the future. It is grounded in the immediate experience of God’s people to the point that it concerns judgment upon the present more than prediction about what is to come, even though that judgment is expressed as threat or promise that will only be realized at a future time. What we call eschatology tends rather to move from the future to the present. It focuses on the end-times in order to provide us with data—thoughts, images and concepts—that will shape our journey toward the Kingdom of God.” (Fr. John Breck)

“Another obvious point that stands out in this biblical vision of history is that the transfiguring power of the New Creation is explained not by the past, but be the future. It is clear that the action of the living God can only be transfiguring and creative. But the marvel of God who revealed himself in Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is that His creative act comes from the future; it is prophetic. God "comes" into the world; He is before us, and we go out to meet Him who calls us, who quickens us, who sends us out, who makes us grow, and who liberates us.” (Patriarch Ignatius IV)

“When something new happens, it is happening from the future and pointing us toward our destiny. God is redeeming time in time and making all things new. God may have promised in the past but the direction of the promise is from the future and we are moving toward it together.” (Benjamin White)

“And so, right now, as 2020 heads to a longed for conclusion, and 2021 beckons, we live, we love, and we serve, on the basis of this certain future. We have been grasped by God for good. This is the future from which we live fully in the present…If people truly believe in the kingdom that Christ proclaims, they will live differently…the future causes much of the present. We are not wandering aimlessly. Enlightenment thinking has led many people to secularism, to see the world as a mechanized universe that is driven by random events, a series of chemical responses to stimuli….our lives are more than one…thing after another. Our lives our shaped by the future that God promises us. If we see each person we meet as a beloved child of God, it will influence how we respond to them. If we believe that God will reconcile all people, we will act to heal the divisions between people instead of retreating into partisan tribes.” (Pastor Andrew Brook, Donald F. Heath, Jr.)


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