“Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”
Matthew 6:34 (The Message)
So, I wish it was easy to follow Jesus’ encouragement from this passage in Matthew. We all know that it is one of the hardest things God asks us to do – to trust in Him and His provision for us, regardless of the circumstances. However, this trust is the key to us experiencing “life abundantly” as He has promised in John 10:10.
Building up the muscles that help us live with attention to what God is doing right now – in this moment – was the focus of our September Seeking Stillness retreat. We did look back to remind ourselves of how God has provided for us in the situations we have faced in our lives. We worshiped Him for the ways he has provided for us. We were grateful and encouraged.
We also dug into why we tend to fixate on all those things that could go wrong in our future. All those things we worry about not being able to control. We talked a lot about how we make assumptions and conjure up stories about what could happen, that rarely, if ever, materialize.
When we started really focusing on what God was doing in the moment, we realized that God speaks to us in the moment in which we are right now. If our minds and hearts are consumed with regret or even celebration over the past, or more likely, consumed with fears about and efforts to control the future, we block ourselves off from the majesty of God that is all around us, every moment of every day. When the past and the future distract us, we lose hope. We cut ourselves off from the community of believers who can support us. We are deaf and blind to the movement of the Holy Spirit. We are acting as if WE are God and, most of the time, we don’t even realize it because we are moving soooo fast.
Living in the present moment is hard, especially in our society. To do it well, we have to slow down, connect with God, and focus. While that can be easier while on retreat, our goal is to build time and space into our days so that we remind ourselves of the amazing power and provision of the God we serve. He refuels our batteries when we are able to give Him praise for what He is doing in our lives. He gives us hope when we realize that we are not alone. He alone is God and He is most powerfully and tangibly present in this very moment of our lives. Can you take a minute, right now, to sense how God is at work in this very moment of your life?