Today Is The Day
By Dot Bowen
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Matthew 6:25, 27 (NIV)
How would you answer the question, How many days out of each week do you wake up excited and hopeful today will be the best day of your life? Five out of seven days? Three out of seven? Or would you say you can’t comprehend ever enjoying another day out the fear of being disappointed again? I have great news for you regardless of your answer: God gives us the hope we need to face each day with fresh and new confidence. God is greater than anything or anyone who seeks to steal the hope each day offers.
If there’s one consistent regret I’ve struggled with, it’s looking back and regretting the time I spent longing for what might be rather than accepting what is. I’ve learned to ask God for the strength to forget the past so I can enjoy the present. Unfortunately, it’s easy to carry the disappointments and pain of our yesterdays into our todays, while what ifs can occupy our waking hours. You know what I mean—“what if this happens” or “what if this doesn’t happens.” I’m not sure anything is better at robbing our enjoyment of living in the moment than the fear that lies behind what if. Perhaps Jesus was addressing how to conquer this fear in Matthew 6:34 when He said, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Jesus encourages us to enjoy today by not worrying about what happened yesterday. Yesterday is gone! Today is the day God has given us to live. Is it little wonder we can’t enjoy today if we carry what happened yesterday and add it to what might happen today? In Matthew 6:25-27, Jesus tells us not to be anxious about life—what we eat or drink, our body shape and size, or what we wear—because God will take care of our needs. He tells us to watch the birds and lilies and realize the same God that takes care of creation is the same God who takes care of us. Jesus closes this important passage by asking who can add a single hour to his life of by being worried?
The longer we live, the more aware we become of how little control we have over life in general. Yet I feel sure we each struggle to control what we have no control over. How would your todays look if you woke each morning committed to trust God to take care of what He alone can control? I’ve found we can plan and prepare for what might be, but God alone has the power and control to produce the outcome of what will be.
As each day passes, I’m more and more aware of how fleeting life is. There is no guarantee I will wake up with the opportunity to face another day. We can learn from the past and plan for the future, but we can only live today. If you and I are going to enjoy each day God gives us, we must try not to control what might be or what has been and bring it into what is. We won’t have the strength to add yesterday’s troubles to today’s opportunities. As God graciously gives us another day, it’s up to us to trust Him with yesterday’s issues, tomorrow’s promises, and today’s joy. Perhaps you’re familiar with the popular quote that sums up this concept so well: “Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That's why it is called the present.” We must choose between existing and enjoying each day. If we are going to live, we must begin to live today.
- Begin your day reading Matthew 6:25-34 and meditate on the promise Jesus offers you.
- What’s keeping you from making the most of your today?
- What problems from yesterday do you carry that rob you from enjoying today?
- Are you afraid of the what ifs in your life?
- Ask yourself, Am I truly living each day to its fullness, and Who am I living for?
- List what worried you yesterday and ask yourself what you could have done to change those circumstances. If so, then change what you can and commit to Jesus the things you cannot change.
- Are you willing to ask Jesus for the desire to make each day count for His purposes and not yours?