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Out In Front

February 07, 2024  |  Tim Kellerman

The other day, soon after the new year unfolded, a random Hymn came to my mind.  Most of you will recognize it: “I Know Who Holds Tomorrow.”  The refrain goes like this.  Go ahead and sing along,

Many things about tomorrow,
I don't seem to understand;
But I know who holds tomorrow,
And I know who holds my hand.

Jesus spoke openly about the unknowns of life – the tomorrows that remain hidden until they become today. Since we humans don’t have laser vision that burns the wrapper off the unknown, we can tend to be anxious about those things. What things?  You know, those things that we don’t know anything about.  Those things that, based on the laws of probability, will probably never happen – says Tim to his worrying alter-ego (over and over again).

The Apostle Matthew, disciple, and Gospel writer took careful notes of Jesus words on this subject.  You can read about it in chapter 6.  Here’s a snippet from verses 33 and 34:

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well.”

That being the case...

“…don’t be anxious about tomorrow,

for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.

Let the day's own trouble be sufficient for the day."

Here’s the good news at the beginning of anything including a brand new year.  We may not know what 2024 hold, but Jesus holds it for us.  I like to think of it like this.  Whatever is coming, Jesus is out ahead of it on our behalf.  Think, for a moment, of all those Bible stories where life happened in big and unexpected ways and God was out ahead preparing the way:

  • When Adam and Eve sinned, God was already out in front of them planning for the redemption of the world.
  • When Jacob sent his servant back to the home place to find a wife (Genesis 24), God was out in front all the way, preparing just the right woman. 
  • When the Israelites were crammed into a cul-de-sac of impossibility (Exodus 14) with one way in and one way out and the Egyptians breathing down their necks, God was out ahead and prepared a man and a staff to split the Red Sea into a supernatural highway. 
  • When Mary was still a virgin (Luke 1), God was out in front of her preparing her body to carry the Savior of the world. That included Joseph, Elizabeth, a manger, shepherds, and a plan of escape to Egypt when things got rough politically.
  • Before God created the heavens and the earth, he was preparing us to be the home base for His Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:4).
  • Then there was John the Baptist.  God was way out in front preparing John, the “locust and honey eater”, to get out there and prepare the way for the Lord.

Recently, I read through the account in John 2 of Jesus’ first miracle in Cana where he changed water into wine at a wedding. Since no one has a copyright on what that was really all about, here’s a perspective you are free to take or leave. 

  • Maybe the first miracle was a wedding so that the Father could get out ahead of us and communicate through Jesus the intimacy he desires for humanity and how he sent the Bridegroom to prepare the Bride for that very thing.  
  • Maybe the idea of Jesus changing water into wine expressed the importance of being transformed into new wineskins so that we have the capacity to contain the new wine of the Holy Spirit – the best of the best – in our lives.
  • Maybe the water into wine miracle was a way for Jesus to get out ahead of our hopeless and desperate situations to show us that if he can do that, he has the capacity to turn our nothing into something and that he does so exceedingly, abundantly above all we can ask, or think or imagine. 
  • Maybe the wedding story in John 2 included that mother/son moment when Jesus argued (sort of) with his mom so that we could understand the key to God’s supernatural work in our lives, which is…

“Do whatever He tells you!”

  • Maybe Jesus was out ahead of us simply preparing us to understand that obedience to the voice of the Lord is critical in our walk with him.  
  • Finally, maybe Jesus was out of ahead of us in this story to remind us that belief does not necessarily stem from the words we speak but the obedience we carry and practice.  It’s because of what the disciples heard AND most importantly saw that brought about their belief.  

"This miraculous sign at Cana in Galilee was the first time Jesus revealed his glory.

And his disciples believed in him" (John 2:11).

Here’s my point: Jesus was out in front of his purpose before he even began. The wedding bears all the markings of the gospel. The story of redemption is folded neatly into this amazing miracle.  

That’s my take.  Maybe. Who knows. But the lesson I get from Jesus at the beginning of a new year is that he is out in front of us. He’s ready. He’s waiting. And if we listen and if we obey and if we trust, he will come through in amazing fashion. Just “do what he tells you to do.” Or, keep doing what he called you to do. Or, keep talking to who he called you to talk to. Or, (fill in the blank).  And whatever happens, if he tells you to do something crazy, listen to his mom and do it.  Then buckle up! The best is on the way!  Who knows who will come to believe because you simple obey. 


I love you and IM4U!