Somehow in each individual the whole history of mankind is played out again.
There is always creation (natural and spiritual)... innocence, and battle, the presence of evil and the purpose of God.
The future too, is veiled. There may be indications of coming storms (or dawns) but this is partial and we must walk by faith. God does not reveal the future to us in detail.
Amos said God would show His secret to the prophets...
yet prophesied nothing of the great earthquake which shook
Jerusalem two years later.
Every generation is a transition, nonetheless within the march of history some generations witnessed a greater transition than others, a transition which is profound, final. Generations which are not just "continuances" but which mark an end and a beginning. I believe our generation is such a one. As I mentioned in the recent posting "What time is it?" we live at the end of an age, just as surely as Luther, Wesley, or Booth. Many of the mainstays of contemporary civilization have outlived their usefulness and the anachronic structures of the past are now found to be the things which suffocate the opportunities and challenges of the future.
Where does the process start? How may we prepare ourselves to hear and to respond to that call? I believe the first thing is honesty - an honest look at the principles and practices of our lives and our churches. Just as businesses can resort to fanciful esoteric book keeping to cover failure, so in Christian circles there has been much adjusting of truth in order that it fit our reality and "balance our books." Both quantity and quality seem to have been vastly exaggerated as the church looks at itself at home and overseas - What does a "membership" of thousands of people mean if on Sundays only a small percentage of them attend church? What about the converts who somehow never form part of the congregation?
What about the quality? - If these folk don't ever come to church at meeting time can they be born of the Spirit of God? - Or is their's just the interest of a passing emotion?
A thorough examination by the Holy Spirit will not only show us our condition, but will show us God's desired foundations; the unalterable things of God which He desires to work out "on earth as it is in heaven." God is the same in heaven as on earth - When He visits man He always does it in the fullness of His power and His purpose. He comes as He is, the First and the Last, the Source and Sustenance of Life without limitation, the One to Whom all power is given in heaven and in earth. There is never a day when He will settle for anything less than the heavenly standard or a day when He doesn't have the power to do His work. He aims for a reconciling of all things; a bringing into harmony with Himself of every part of man's nature and man's world - the coming in our midst of His Kingdom of Life and Fullness.
As we see God's standards and our own level of reality these reference points will allow us to look to the future and discern the unveiled purpose of God. Then as the prophets and saints of the Old Testament, we will be a people on earth holding the Eternal portion of God in our hands and carrying the Kingdom through to another generation. We will hold the faith and be the link that God desires us to be in joining the past to the future until the day when all the earthly generations reach their end and the Light of Eternity shines forever.