Pacific Magazine - Volume 17, Number 1

Back to the future - the history of the next 60 years at FPU

To predict is futile, to dream divine

“Dreams are the touchstones of our characters.”—Henry David Thoreau

In fourth grade my Weekly Reader predicted that by 1980 I would be bopping back and forth to the mall through the air thanks to the jet pack on my back. I’m waiting.

We should always predict the future with a grin. Why? Because despite our best intentions, our most cogent analysis and our biggest stack of statistics, we’re going to get it wrong.

Over the years, recognized leaders in their fields have assured us that automobiles would never go faster than 60 miles per hour, movies would replace the written word and no one would need more than 25K of memory on his or her personal computer. The refusal of present trends to continue, the law of unintended consequences and just the desire to see the future go our way all conspire to keep us humble.

Praise God! If we could really figure the future, we’d no doubt really foul it up.

Instead of trying to divine what will happen, let’s do something important: let’s dream about what could happen.

Dreaming is different than predicting. Dreaming has nothing to do with comforting our friends and foiling our foes with research, learned opinion and other modern crystal balls. Dreaming is an expression of faith—and faith is the flesh of the future.

So dream with us, and dream in the certainty that, while we don’t know what is to come, we are in loving hands.

I’ll keep one light burning for that jet pack.

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