She stood anxiously on the corner, waiting. Her hair whipped around her face, and she stared through it vacantly. A thousand dreams mesmerized her mind and her heart danced to the rhythm of desire. She’d worked the corner of When for so long, she’d forgotten the world around her. Well most of it, anyway.
Several blocks over was her number two spot. The corner of Then. Between the two, she preferred the corner of When, but sometimes, the lack of business there drove her back to Then, where Fear and Despair would swoop in and torment her mercilessly. What did it matter, though. Life offered little more than Hell did for a prostitute.
Sometimes, her memories would draw her focus to the one place she was ever happy. Her home, a cozy little bungalow on the corner of Here and Now. Her heart yearned for the comfort of it, the sanctity and security she knew there. But Here and Now was so far removed from her present life, she didn’t dare entertain the hope of it. There was nothing there for her, she was sure. And because she was sure, she recklessly sold herself on the corners of Then and When. And little by little, her heart was torn away and she lived in agony.
Dear reader, let it be known that Then and When are the most effective tools of the enemy. He would have us to either live in the past (Then) or in the future (When), so that we completely miss the Here and Now. And sadly, when we refuse to live in the present, we are forfeiting our right to live at all. Because reminiscing with the past, or gallivanting with the future is dancing with phantoms. Some that torment us, and others that simply distract us. That is not the life Jesus died to give us. He died so that we might have life abundantly. I am certain that living in the “if only” or the “what if” is not living abundantly. It’s living in either regret or anxiety. Neither of those are good for us, because both are a form of inner chaos. God is a God of order, not chaos.
When we choose to entertain the phantoms of things that are no more or seemingly yet to be, we prostitute our now moments. We sell ourselves to things that may never materialize and we completely miss what God is doing in the present. We give away moments that we will never know or get back, in exchange for vapors. And living in such a way causes us to be vacant to people who are present now. How tragic!
Listen to me: God is the I AM. That is a present tense action verb, meaning He is here now, doing something. Here now, doing something. Don’t miss what He is up to, wishing to be in another moment in time you aren’t even guaranteed, doing things that may never come to pass with people who could be nothing more than figments of your own imagination. Satan would love for you to live your life always looking into the future. But spending too much time there is flirting with witchcraft. God never meant for you to live that way. Nor did He intend for you to live your life looking into the past. The location of your eyeballs is not an accident. He wants you looking straight ahead! He wants you to see what He is doing, embrace life as it comes your way. Live fully in the moments He has given you. All these ideas built up in your head may look good, but are they from God? Who can say for sure? But I do know this: if God told us everything before it happened, where would our need for trust and faith be? And even when He gives insight and visions, you can trust that it won’t come about in the way you imagine. The Bible is full of promises that took the long way around, and in the meantime, men who had to wrestle with life and holding on to faith. Abraham was given a fruitful land and promised a child, but married to a barren woman and living in famine. He could have been so paralyzed by fear and disappointment, but what kind of life would he have lived in the waiting? Joseph dreamt of a royal throne, but seemed to always be sitting in a dungeon. His past and his future both looked bleak. What hope did he have? Moses felt the passion of a revolution, but was exiled to the desert by the very people he longed to save. Do you know the common thread that bound these men together? They got to know the I AM and lived fully in the present until God moved on their behalf. They ministered where they were and waited faithfully for God to do His thing. They didn’t sit around bemoaning the past or anxious about what was to come. They lived in the present and entrusted the future to God.
Here and Now. There is a life to be lived there.