Living in the Moment (Part 2)

Hi folks

Here’s the second half of my blog post on living in the moment. I’ve written it as part of the Daily Service, airing this Friday at 9.45 on Radio 4 LW, (click on image below). As always, your prayers would be hugely appreciated. Thank you!

2 thoughts on “Living in the Moment (Part 2)

  1. The link no longer works! Would you send me original?!

  2. Sorry Katharine. Yes: here’s the main part of the original reflection:

    We’re all familiar with the exhortation to “live in the moment”, but much depends on which moment we pick. For many, 2020 is a year we’d like to escape. We mourn for the freedoms we’ve lost – and yearn for a time when normal life might return. Few of us want to live in 2020, and understandably so.

    But if it’s difficult for us to stay present, think of how much harder it would have been for the apostle Paul. As he wrote to the persecuted church his own hands were chained. He could be forgiven for complaining or indulging in escapism. Instead, he is grounded in the present – and is filled with hope. Paul argues that gospel mindfulness is not a modern invention, but is essential to Christian living.“I have found the secret of contentment IN any and every circumstance” he says, and it’s a secret he wants to share.

    When we’re under pressure, it’s tempting to look either forwards or backwards. Paul suggests that to live in the present requires both. Instead of writing off AD 62 as an annus horribilis, he urges his listeners to ‘forget what is behind and strain towards what is ahead’. This might sound glib, especially to those of us with regrets. But the apostle speaks from painful experience. At one time Paul persecuted the church and presided over the death of believers. Now, he refuses to let the past enslave him – whether for bad, or for good.

    Of course it’s easy to romanticise our past as well as to demonise it. “It was better in the old days” we sigh, “the world was a kinder and simpler place.” Not so, counters Paul. As a renowned scholar he was once respected and admired – now he’s imprisoned and reviled. But he wouldn’t go back. Compared to knowing Jesus, everything is loss.

    As believers our circumstances may change but our identity in Jesus remains the same. So if you want to look to the past, says Paul, then look to His. Jesus died and was raised – which means that our past is redeemed and our future is secure. Whatever we face right now, the Lord is with us by His Spirit. This means that we can dare to live fully; in the bad times and in the good.

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