We all have one don’t we – we all have a past! Some of us are ashamed of our past, some of us boast in our past and some of us just pretend it never happened, but regardless of our stance, we have all have a story to tell!
Future – we all have one! Whether we’ve been given a “life-sentence” by the medical or judicial system, whether we have youth on our side, or the wisdom that comes with years, we still have a future. Some of us are dreamers, some of us are realists and some of us can’t even bear to face the thought of another day! But nonetheless the sun sets and the sun rises, and day follows night!
Then there is the present; the moment that we are in right now! Some of us might think that life couldn’t be better, everything is perfect and you whistle down the street on your way to work! Whilst others might find themselves wishing their time away, their day away, even their life. Still others are so busy dreaming of their future they forget to live in the present, and set down goals to achieve those dreams they spend their days imagining!
OK, so where am I going with this? My challenge for you today, is a challenge that I have been faced with, and that is the live for the moment! Now you might think that such a challenge is pointless but let me expand.
How many moments do we waste burdened with guilt? How many moments do we waste daydreaming about a future we think will land on our lap without effort, sacrifice and jolly hard work? How many moments do we waste wishing we were somewhere else instead of where we’re at? How many moments do we waste worrying, whether over the past, the present or indeed the future? And how many moments do we actually notice in a day and choose to rejoice in at that given time?
My hope is that most of you have experienced at least some moments of living in the present – moments when you are at peace about where you’re at, who you are, who you are becoming, where you are going, and indeed from where you have come. But my challenge today is that these moments are not limited to moments, but that we embrace every moment and live it!
Jesus Himself promised us life and life in FULL abundance – not partial, but full! His word says that in Him we have joy that FULLY satisfies. His word promises us a hope and a future!
Let us be a Nehemiah! Let us be realists and not shy away from the truths of the situations we find ourselves and in doing so remain fully aware of the challenges of the present, of the work and sacrifice needed to follow the vision for our future…BUT…let us not look back with regret to our past, or be burdened with worry. Rather, right here and right now, let us pick up the shovel and the sword! (see Neh.4) And work prayerfully towards a hope-filled future!
If life is to be lived, and lived to the full, this can only ever be achieved when we are sold-out to Christ, surrendered to His will and His purpose, for as Solomon shares with us – a man who tasted the best the world has to offer – all else is folly! Let us become visionaries for Him! – But be aware that if He trusts you enough to show you a glimpse of what is on the horizon, there is sacrifice to be made in the present to get to that place, and in order for us to do that we need to live in the moment!
My prayer is that this day you will take every opportunity to live and to rejoice! Don’t wait until everything is plain sailing or you “feel like it”! For days will turn to weeks, weeks to months and months to years and one day you will stop and think, “What have I done with my life?” Remember our love for Him calls us to offer a sacrifice of praise!
You are no longer who you were. You are no longer where you were, but you are on a journey to becoming more like Him, a journey of hope, adventure, sacrifice and above all blessing beyond measure!
1 Thessalonians 4: 10b
Yet we urge you, brothers and sisters, to do so (love) more and more, 11 and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, 12 so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.
1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.