It happened this way. As I was out walking, I happened upon a good sized slug making its way across a driveway. Normally, one might expect to see an accompanying slime trail. None was present; but I chalked this up to the fact that the heat from the summer sun had likely dried it up fairly quickly.
Continuing my walk, I thought about how symbolic this whole little episode had been. And how telling! After all, how many times over the years have I approached a situation and drawn a conclusion about how things were, only to find that it was not as I had initially assumed. In all such cases, looking at the matter in retrospect clearly showed that I had been mistaken in my initial assumptions.
Such a realization leads me to ponder just how much trouble and/or difficulty I could have avoided if I had not jumped to so many conclusions on so many occasions. Probably more than I could ever count.
Of course, what’s done is done; and the past is the past. There’s no sense crying over spilt milk, as it were! But, while I cannot do anything about the past, I can do something about the future. And for this reason, maybe I‘ll just resolve from this day forward not to draw too many conclusions prematurely!
Proverbs 25:8 tells us: “Do not hastily bring into court, for what will you do in the end, when your neighbor puts you to shame?” While this is very specific advice given for a very specific context, it nonetheless represents the general truth I am attempting to convey. That truth is that we should be careful about being hasty in all our affairs. For whenever we do, we run the risk of finding out that we were wrong to jump to conclusions!
If this is true of life’s situations, and it is, then how much more true is it in life’s relationships?! Remember what Jesus told us in Luke 6:37: “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven…”
I pray the Lord helps me not to jump to conclusions in the many unfolding situations of my life. I pray even more that the Lord helps me not to jump to conclusions in the various relationships of my life! For when I do the first, the results are often bad enough. But when I do the latter, the results can be devastating.
May the Lord help me to look into the future the way I so often look at the past!