“I wish we knew a little more about the future.” I was chatting with another church member about my age during the coffee hour after the service yesterday. She said if she and her husband knew how long they were going to live they could plan a little better for the future. If they knew they would die at a relatively young age they would use their savings to travel more now. If on the other hand they knew they would live several more decades they might have to save their money to cover their living expenses in their last years. I got the feeling from our conversation they were leaning towards living more in the here and now, enjoying some traveling and not worrying excessively about how they’d survive in their nineties.
My grandmother once told me when she was a young girl growing up in Ukraine gypsies camped outside her village. They would tell your fortune if you gave them a watermelon. She was glad she had never taken them up on the offer. Her life had many difficulties and challenges and she was glad she’d only had to face those when they appeared and hadn’t had to worry about them ahead of time.
In the early 1990s our family visited Walden Pond where the famous writer Henry David Thoreau made his home. We each wrote our dreams for the future on the rocks there. Supposedly the rain would wash our dreams into the water of the lake and they would come true. The wishes I wrote that day still haven’t materialized but I’m glad I don’t know what my future holds because that allows me to live in hope that someday my dreams will be fulfilled.
I think a lot about the future. Like my grandmother I am glad I don’t know what it holds. It allows me to live in the here and now and enjoy life like my friend in church has decided to do. Not knowing my future also allows me to hold out hope that the dreams I penned at Walden Pond so long ago can still come true.