In working with people as a pastor for over 3 decades, I have discovered a number of similarities in human behavior. One of these is our failure to grasp the power of the present. All too often people live in anything but “the now.”
There are a lot of folks who are stuck in the past. They are always looking back. Their reminiscence may be filled with regrets over bad decisions in their yesterdays. They are haunted by what they did wrong or failed to do right in years gone by.
Other people focus on the perceived glory of the past. These are the folks who are enamored with how great they used to be, what amazing things they once did, or how wonderful the “good old days” were!
While recognizing and reconciling the mistakes, appreciating the successes and learning the lessons of the past are all important and valuable, that’s where “rear view living” should end.
There is another equally destructive tendency. Many people are living in the future. They are preoccupied with what I call “one day scenarios.” The single person is tortured by the dream of “one day” when they will be married. Sadly, at the very same time, a whole lot of married people are dreaming about the “one day” they hope to be single again! Think about all the “one day” scenarios that cause people to miss their “now” moment.
What does the wisdom of Scripture teach us about “now?” While the Bible helps us understand how to process our past and inspires us with hope for our future, its emphasis is clear on our “today.” God calls us to pay close attention to now — live in the present! Interestingly, the English word “now” is found 365 times in the NIV translation of the New Testament!
Why is now important?
N = You have no other time but now promised and given to you. Yesterday is gone, and tomorrow has not yet arrived.
O = Opportunities for growth, learning, serving, giving and loving always happen in the now! Opportunities always happen in a present moment!
W = What you do with your now will determine what happens in your tomorrows. Your choices now are determining your future destiny.
Let’s all make a decision to make the most of our NOW!