Friday, 8 February 2013

LIVING IN THE PRESENT

Ephesians 3:16-17
"I pray that out of His glorious riches He ( Jesus) may strengthen you with His power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith." ( with emphasis added)

I am someone who likes to plan out my life and can be rather calculated in my thinking and what l do. In short l like to live life being in control of what happens next. But the older I grow, I realised life isn't all about great plans and being in total control. Many times our detailed outlined plans and goals get interrupted by unforeseen circumstances many a times beyond our control. Why? Because we don't  have the privilege of seeing or knowing what's ahead of time. Only God does. We can dream, set goals and hope for a better future but we cannot be in control of how these plans and great goals turns out in reality.

In our society, we are pushed forward in so many ways and so much is expected of us that we forget its the present that counts. The Bible tells us in Galatians 5:25, "Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit." I must admit that this scripture completely and totally changed my thinking especially for someone like me who like to live life far ahead in the future. Not only that it has also save me so much heart arch, disappointments and pain. I say this because, when  unforeseen obstacles loom in the path of my carefully planned course, we start stressing and thinking of them as barriers to our goals and distractions in our carefully planned out life.

Now the question l ask is, how can we expect to live by the Spirit if we seek to move through life
mile by mile rather than step by step? Our walk in the Spirit is to be just that; a walk not a sprint. I
know that every time l have gotten ahead of myself, I have ended up disregarding the present and the
people around me right here and now and the opportunities immediately at hand. When l get ahead of myself, l make dreadful mistakes of ignoring the specifics like sin and instant obedience. Being pre-occupied with future agendas drains us of the energy to engage in the daily, present struggle with the sin and selfish habits that dog our feet.

What l have come to appreciate and learn recently is that, keeping in step with the Spirit; Jesus can pinpoint the areas in our lives that need change. So we don't get ahead of  Jesus trying to take life in leaps rather than steps glossing over the daily obstacles and challenges we face. Then our prayers won't become so general, our Bible reading won't just become a mere 10k run that we need to finish. Our obedience won't be centred around a lot of outward actions, rather it will be more of a daily cleansing of our heart, soul and mind.

The good news is that Jesus becomes our "Goal", Heaven gets  placed on a meal table marked "Today".  l just want to encourage you  with what l am encouraging myself with; "Slow down".
Take some time to meditate on a few words from Apostle James and Jesus Christ.

James 4:13-16
"Now listen, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to this it that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money." Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, "If is it the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that." As it is, you boast and brag. All such boasting is evil.

Matthew 6:33-34
"Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as we'll. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough
trouble of its own."

Lets remember today that our Christian faith is meant to be lived in the present. It isn't a general
broad outline; it is a long walk with a real person Jesus. Details counts a lot, like passing thoughts, small sacrifices. few encouraging words, little acts of kindness and victories over nagging sins. What the Spirit of God is saying to you and l today is, if we are going to walk with Him, then we should pay attention to the present.

By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved 2013.

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