What is the most important day of our life? Have you ever thought about it? Is it the day we were born? Was it the day we made a commitment to God and accepted His Salvation? Was it the day we married our best friend? Was it the day that our children were born? Or have we even lived our most important day yet? Will it be when our kids graduate college? Will it be the day we walk our daughters down the aisle and give them away to a man that she loves so dearly? Or watching our son’s reaction as he sees his bride for the first time? Will it be when they have kids of their own, and we hold our grandbabies for the first time? Will it be when we retire and spend more time with the people we care about? Will it be the day our time on earth is over, and God calls us home to spend eternity with him?
Maybe the most important days of our lives weren’t the most pleasant days. Maybe it was the day we were kicked to the street? Maybe it was the day that we chose to put a child up for adoption rather than aborting them? Maybe it was the day that we decided to become clean and sober for the first time? Maybe it was the day we realized that war is a terrible thing, but suicide isn’t the answer? Maybe it was the day the doctors only delivered bad news? Maybe it was the day our spouse filed for divorce? Maybe it was the day we lost our job? Maybe it was the day we lost a loved one in a tragic accident?
There is a miracle in all these things, even the unpleasant. It is a sign that God is still working in our lives. Romans 8:28 reminds us that “All things work together for good.” The miracles show us the unconditional love, grace, forgiveness, and healing power of God. But what if I told you that no matter how life-changing all these events and days seem to be, the most important day we live is today. Not yesterday, not tomorrow, but now. This moment, this day.
God has been working with me on living life daily instead of living event to event. It becomes overwhelming, exhausting, and fearful projecting what will or needs to happen and trying to make it work out. In construction, I had to see the big picture and the smallest details at the same time to get the project done. Budgets, schedules, workforce, contracts, and so on could get really overwhelming if I didn’t stay three steps ahead. But that was the nature of the beast. In farming, I am planning the next year’s crop before the current crop is harvested. There are always changes to be made, and sometimes I live with the mistakes for a year before they can be fixed. My entire adulthood has been spent not really living day by day, but job by job, season by season, event by event.
I prayed to God and asked Him to guide me and help me understand how to do it. I am always looking to the future. When I look at the past, I only see what I want to change in the future. But often, I am lost in the present. I can’t sit still. If I can’t learn to live in the moment, what kind of life am I really living? Dwelling on the things that happened in the past does no good. Even if I have regrets, I can’t go back and change them. Yeah maybe, I wished I had played football instead of getting a job, but it’s not like I can go back and join a varsity football team. How absurd!
Worrying about encountering something in the future also does no good. If I focus so much on how I want life to play out, I will miss life altogether. It reminds me of the wisdom we were always told in raising our kids; no matter how ready you are to be done with one stage of their life, enjoy it, because you never get that time back. And having experienced it myself, I know the truth and wisdom in it. But even as I know all this, I still struggle with focusing on today.
God gave me a simple analogy to help me. Imagine going on a trip. Even though you have mapped out the trip, you don’t know what you will encounter along the way. Now think about driving at night. You can only see as far as the headlights shine. You can’t see your destination, but can you see far enough to get there? Do your headlights give you enough reaction time to make any necessary adjustments or corrections? Don’t worry about the things you can’t see beyond the lights. If you could see further, would you miss something that was right in front of you because the focus is on the wrong thing? Keep driving the car. You can deal with the obstacles when you get to them as they come. Stay alert, and do what you know to do. Don’t worry about whatever has slowed you down behind you. No matter what you have already passed, looking in the rearview mirror only makes it smaller and smaller, because you are moving forward. Keep moving forward. Take care of what you see in the lights and have faith that God will reveal those things you can’t.
As I think about this analogy, I am reminded how many times the Scripture tells us the world is full of darkness. But more importantly, Jesus is referred to as the light of the world! John 8:12 says, “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” What if I allow Jesus to be my headlights? Would it not bring peace knowing that He is there with me, directing my path, and revealing the things I need to watch for? The scripture also says numerous times to be sober and be vigilant, which reminds me to stay focused and not get distracted or fall asleep. “What about the deer that unexpectedly jumps out right in front of the car,” you might ask. Does that mean that Jesus fails? No, it only means that He wants us to experience those things, not so we lose our faith, but so we can go through them, conquer them, and grow in our faith. Jesus said it best when he said, “Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour.” (John 12:27)
Lately, I have been more at peace and been able to live more appropriately. It doesn’t mean that it is always easy. Every morning, I wake up and try to pray first thing before my feet even hit the floor. I simply pray, “God, today is Your day. Help me live it for You and not worry about anything else. Guide me and give me wisdom to deal with whatever You bring to me. Let me walk in Your joy and be a light for others to see You.” It changes my perspective and makes it easier for me to say:” This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it.”
— Written by Lee
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