Back to the Future? No, thank you.

When I first saw the trailer for Back to the Future II and found out that Marty McFly was going to travel into the future, I couldn’t wait to see it. I was like a 10 year old boy seeing a movie trailer about the future. Yeah, I was THAT excited.

Imagine, traveling 20-30 years into the future to see…anything. You could see how your city looks. You could see what cars looked like. You could find out about advancements in technology that will make your life so much easier. You could see architectural design changes, clothing design changes, and personal design changes.

What wouldn’t be awesome about going into the future?

For Marty, it was seeing himself.

The possibility of seeing a sad version of myself 20-30 years into the future was enough to dissuade me from making the trek to the mall whenever my friend, the doctor, said he wanted to show me something and mumbled something about plutonium. Normally, I’d be on my skateboard in a heartbeat. But, having this warning from Marty McFly probably saved myself from heartache at least three times. I couldn’t bare the thought of seeing anything other than what I pictured in my head as a child; a mansion with tons of animals and a limousine to drive me around. I’m still working on it, only I have traded the mansion for a more humble sized home that is well built and can withstand hurricane force winds and is safe for my family. The pets all got thrown out. We are currently waiting for a cat and a turtle to die or run away. And, the limousine was traded in for a handful of other cars that I will happily drive myself. But other than that, the dream is about the same. In either case, it involves me making money as a writer and being financially well-off; meaning no debt, money in the bank, and all the necessities taken care of, plus some. In both scenarios I have a family to care for and be with. In both dreams, I have done something worthwhile with my life.

So why am I so scared to journey into the future? If this dream of a life of success has been bouncing around in my head since the mid-80’s then why am I questioning whether or not the dream will come true?
Fear. Doubt. Disbelief.

Ouch. Those three words look so small. They are just letters arranged in a certain order so that your brain and my brain can decipher them; sound out the letters and mash them together like a Sesame Street learning moment. Fff- -ear. Fear. D- -out. Doubt. You remember. But those three words have stopped more people dead in their tracks than anything else.

I could write out all the reasons why we should, and could, overcome these three words. There have been books written on each of them. There is scripture that tells us how to deal with them. But the fact is, these are three things we run into everyday. Sometimes we hurdle over these three words with the speed an agility of an Olympic athlete. Other times we get sucked into them and sink to the point where we find it nearly impossible to even move, and any move we make only seems to cause us to sink deeper.

Fear. Doubt. Disbelief.

They are real. Satan uses them as weapons against us. If we aren’t prepared for them, then we will get smacked in the face by them every. single. time.

Fortunately, there is no time machine. I have no friend who plays with plutonium and flux capacitors. And, I don’t currently own a skateboard. So, the chances of me even coming across the opportunity to see myself 20-30 years from now are pretty slim. That means, everyday, I can still choose to believe the dream. I can’t still choose to work towards the dream. I can still have all the things I have dreamt of. Sure, I will run into fear, doubt, and disbelief, but I will never know how things will turn out in 20-30 years until September 17th 2032.

Until then, anything is possible.

What’s in your future?

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