A dream without a plan

September 25, 2013 | Viewpoints | Number 19
Sherri Grosz |

“A dream without a plan is just a wish,” writes Katherine Paterson.

The Contemporary English Version translates Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 this way: “Everything on earth has its own time and its own season. There is a time for birth and death, planting and reaping, for killing and healing, destroying and building, for crying and laughing, weeping and
dancing, for throwing stones and gathering stones, embracing and parting. There is a time for finding and losing, keeping and giving, for tearing and sewing, listening and speaking. There is also a time for love and hate, for war and peace.”

There is a time for everything, and there were many outdoor activities that were going to be the focus of my time this year: flowerbeds to dig, perennials to divide and mulch to put down. Yet, here it is the end of summer and they are all still on the to-do list. Somehow time got away from me.

I was reminded of how little time was spent in those flowerbeds when I did some weeding a week ago. The flowerbeds were filled with weeds; a few were nearly knee-high. When I actually stopped to consider, it had been at least four weeks since I had given any attention to those flowerbeds. Reflecting on my weedy flowerbeds and all that hasn’t been done this summer, I realized that I have to be intentional.

I had a dream of how my summer would unfold, but what I didn’t have was a clear plan for how all of my dreams would be accomplished. Life is sometimes like my summer. We have things we want or need to do, but somehow we just don’t get around to making them happen. We have a dream, but we don’t have a plan and we are left with just a wish.

“We should have done this years ago,” is a phrase we often hear from clients at Mennonite Foundation of Canada (MFC). The individuals and couples we meet with have often intended to create or update wills and estate plans for years, but somehow it just didn’t happen. Now they have taken the first steps to turn their dreams into an estate plan. We may also review current assets and lifetime charitable giving to determine how to accomplish their charitable dreams now while they are able to witness the results of the gift.

The best intentions alone don’t get things done. God has entrusted both people and things to our care while we are on this earth and has set aside a time for everything. It is God-honouring to ensure that we make plans. If it’s time for you to work on charitable or estate plans, MFC is here to help. We love turning dreams into plans and seeing the results when you put your plans into action.

Sherri Grosz is a stewardship consultant in the Kitchener, Ont., office of Mennonite Foundation of Canada (MFC). For more information on impulsive generosity, stewardship education, and estate and charitable gift planning, contact your nearest MFC office or visit http://MennoFoundation.ca.

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