Every day is gift; that is why we call it ‘the present.’
I like that quote. It reminds me of young children, who live fully in the present. They are ‘concrete’ thinkers. Try asking a two-year-old, for example, what he did yesterday. Or what his plans are for tomorrow. (You can share the answers you get in the blog comments!) At that age, past and future are difficult concepts to grasp. A child lives in the here and now. He talks about the things he can see around him or things that he is currently doing.
Perhaps this is one of the characteristics of child-like faith that we need to emulate.
Jesus made an interesting statement to the Samaritan woman recorded in John 4. It seems that she tried to dodge Jesus when he pinned her down about her current status, and sidetracked to a century-old conflict between Jews and Samaritans about the correct place of worship. She was going to the past. When Jesus answered by saying that the time for true worship has “NOW COME,” she sidetracked again to talk about a day that was still coming when everything in life would make sense. It really seems that she wanted to avoid a discussion about the mess-of-a-life she was living right then.
Jesus responded, “I who speak to you am he.” Jesus was saying, “Messiah is here with you, right here – right now, to set you free.”
I am not saying we should not plan! I also am not saying that God does not hold the future. He does. But there is something about living in the present, with God, in whatever challenge we are in right now, that is very important. God promises to guide us a step at a time, to whisper in our ears to turn to the right or left.
Might I be stuck in a painful experience or burden of bitterness from the past? Might I be too worried about tomorrow to enjoy today? Or — am I fantasizing about a ‘fairy tale’ future where everything will be perfect and all problems solved?
God wants my attention TODAY. He wants to walk with me TODAY. He wants my life to honor him TODAY — when things are not perfect and I have not figured everything out (yet). “Today is the day of salvation.”
Enjoy the moment; enjoy the present.