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Perspectives: One Day at a Time

Perspective by Pastor Will Johns

How do you make summer plans right now? It is very difficult to plan anything because so much is unknown about what restrictions will or will not still be in place. And so we must deal with the loss of future expectation. I don't know about you, but I like having things to look forward to. I love it when I have some family vacations scheduled on the calendar. I have had to cancel two trips for this summer already and that is disappointing. I'm sure most of you are in a similar situation. So how do we respond?

One day at a time. That's profound wisdom from the old gospel song. But it actually goes all the way back to Jesus. He taught us in Matthew 6:31-34, "Therefore, do not worry saying, 'What shall we eat? What shall we drink? What shall we wear?' ... For your Heavenly Father knows that you need these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you as well. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."

This is where we get the principle of one day at a time. Jesus tells us to limit our focus. When we try to imagine what the future will be like, we are basically creating an illusion in our minds.

For instance, think about what you imagined doing on April, 6 months ago. Did your image of the future and the reality have anything in common?

Probably not. I don't think any of us could imagine that we would be where we are today. So our attempt to make future plans should always be held very lightly. We never know what may come.

And so wisdom demands that we find joy in the present moment. This moment is what you know you have. You are alive and well this moment. Thank God for that. Rejoice in that. You have people in your life that you can choose to love this moment. Don't put love off into the future. Choose to show kindness now. Don't put joy off into the future. Choose to be grateful now. Don't put peace off into the future. Choose to trust God now. 

The power of living one day at a time is this: All God's grace is always, only, in the present. God grants us no grace for the future until it becomes the present.

So if you feel overwhelmed by the future, ask yourself two questions:

1. Do I really know what the future holds?
2. What grace am I missing out on now, because I'm focused on trying to figure out the future?

We don't know what the future holds, but we do know Who holds the future. And we can experience God's grace now.

Today. And we can trust that if we follow God's leading in our lives today, our future will take care of itself.

--Will Johns is pastor of Potomac Conference's Beltville church's Tech Road Campus in Silver Spring, Md.

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