Yesterday is History, Tomorrow a Mystery, Today is a Gift, That’s Why it’s called the Present” –Eleanor Roosevelt
The future and the past are both overrated; the only thing that matters is the present. The past can never be recaptured and the future won’t even be the future when it arrives, it too will be the present. I have spent so much of my life paying attention to my past and future that I have missed many “presents.” The present is a perpetual gift to be unwrapped and experienced.
I miss The Cosby Show on Thursday’s followed by A Different World, I definitely miss high school years, I miss the joy of attending UC Berkeley as an undergrad, and even the camaraderie and relationships from Seminary. Interestingly enough when the Cosby Show was coming on, I couldn’t wait to get to high school, while in high school I took for granted that these were literally the best years of my life because I couldn’t wait to get to college, while in college I just wanted to graduate as soon as possible and I felt like graduate school was extremely laborious and even wanted to quit at times. If this trend continues I run the risk of missing life always wanting what was and what could be not realizing what is now. For us driven people who live perpetually in the present, don’t get it twisted contentment and complacency aren’t synonymous. Complacent means I’m stuck here, contentment means I thank God for here.
I’m approaching a new juncture in my life where I thank God and appreciate the beauty of now. All of what I think is right, what should be, what I perceive as wrong are merely pieces of the puzzle called now. There is something that you are complaining about currently that you will be thanking God for eventually. Expedite the process and thank Him now. Life is too short to miss now, singles want to be married, and regrettably many who are married miss being single. Those without children desire them, and those with them often want a break. Embracing now means embracing whatever part of the process that you are in. I am learning like Paul in whatsoever state I am in to be content. A frequently used church colloquialism is “I’m not where I outta be but thank God I’m not where I used to be.” I challenge this notion, who says you aren’t where you ought to be, what if you are in the perfect place for your process. The prodigal son was in the perfect place when he was in the pig pin because it was the catalyst for him to come to himself. Jonah was in the perfect place in the belly of the fish, because it too provoked repentance. The 3 Hebrew boys were in the perfect place in the fire, because they were positioned for a divine encounter with God. Jesus was in the perfect place on the cross, despite it being the place of the most pain; it led Him to the moment when He would declare all power was in His hands. Be responsible with your “now”, because it will soon be “then.”