Posted by: mikenicholsblog | July 29, 2012

living in the moment

While on vacation last week, I had the opportunity to think about the mental pace and daily structure of my life. Without much effort I create too many options for too little time. And then I find myself frustrated with the quick pace, crammed schedule and being mentally distracted. Well, who am I to blame for all of that? I think you know the answer. To live in the moment is a phrase I could speak convincingly about, but too often they are words that resonate in my soul more as cliché than reality. It is my assumption that your schedule, pace and mental distractedness may, in a small way, resemble mine. Therefore, I would like to challenge you with a radical shift that causes you (and I) to embrace God moment by moment. 

Living in the moment does not come without risk.  For one, you will become more aware of lost moments, and lost moments are just that … lost.  Let me illustrate my point. During the vacation/part business meeting last week,  I found myself not enjoying the moments as much as I was trying to control them (still recovering as a type-A personality). But then something happened that brought living in the moment to the forefront of my mind. At a big party on the last night of the meeting, my daughter grabbed my hand and then cajoled and badgered me to come out onto the dance floor with her and her mom (plus the multitude of other people). Nothing could be further from my comfort zone … nothing! Nothing on that trip will be remembered as much as the laughter (at non-rhythmic dad) and fun that we had in those few moments, and to think I almost missed it. Remember, a moment lost is just that … lost.

Living in the moment seems elusive in our fast-paced world. My daughter’s dance lesson illustrated to me the power in a moment, and also how easily it could be lost by our own frailties or fears. Now, every week is not a vacation or big party, but every week is filled with countless moments given to us by God to be cherished. It is easy for all of us to use our pace of life and busy schedules as an excuse. And it doesn’t take much energy to be diverted by yesterday’s failures and tomorrow’s fears. But when I (and you) live in the moment, excuses aren’t necessary.  In his book, God Is Closer Than You Think, John Ortberg shares that the greatest moment of your life is right now. We cannot change yesterday, nor control tomorrow.

So how are we to live in the moment when the pace of the world we live in is not likely to slow any time soon? Our schedules will be full, demands will seek to overwhelm us, our minds will be pulled in a hundred directions and we will have a million reasons to excuse our weariness. But if we choose to relish the moments, perspective can come, our minds will relax and our souls will quiet down. Believers in Christ are to be people of joy, radically embracing God’s design for each moment. It is a matter of faith to enjoy Him with each moment, while trusting Him with all of the demands we face. Another quote from God Is Closer Than You Think gives us clear  perspective on understanding how to live in the moment.

“We are not meant to embrace moments, but to embrace God. Moments are not always good; God is never anything else but good. Moments are simply the place where we meet Him. Every moment. Starting now.”

Not tomorrow, but right now, embrace God in this moment. It’s all we are guaranteed. I illustrated my crazy dance lesson because I struggle, just like you. God gave me a moment to enjoy my daughter, and I almost missed it!

When you and I consciously seek to embrace God in each and every moment, something will be different. We will have a clearer  perspective on our lives, and not be as bound to the issues of yesterday and tomorrow. We will all battle our fast-paced world until He comes. But we can embrace Him in each moment and have joy in the journey. Remember a moment lost is just that … lost!


Responses

  1. Thanks Mike. Believe it or not, I’ve finally decided to join you and Genel on your journey on word and the first thing I’m confronted with is an image of you on the dance floor. This is going to be a challenge, I can tell. Love you brother and just know that your love for Jesus has been an extreme inspiration in my life. As far as your type A personality and your overactive superego, well, you’ve got eternity to work that all out.

  2. Mike , thanks my friend , a great message after our recent conversation
    glad to hear you didnt “break a leg” but had a memorable moment— thanks for giving us memorable moments and reminders on living on Word.
    Brad


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