Live a day, and a part of a day, at a time.
We seem to spend a lot of time worrying, especially in these last several years where we have experienced the threat of terrorism and financial crisis. But all the worry in the world won’t take away the things that frighten us. All that worry can do is to ruin our health and in turn give us one more thing to worry about.
The 23rd Maxim for Christian Living is to live a day, and a part of a day, at a time. Living in the present is one of the best ways I can think of to eliminate worry. Even if there are real challenges going on in our lives, to live in the present allows us to take control of how we will respond to those challenges. Some of life’s problems involve some long range planning, but every one of those plans is put into action one day at a time.
Being aware of the present also allows us to enter more fully into relationships with others. I just returned from one of our annual priest gatherings. Knowing that the time I had with my brother priests was limited encouraged me to be more present to my brother priests. Taking each day as its own day can give us the space to be more present to our families, friends and co-workers because we are spending less time worrying about the future.
How often do each of us reach the end of day and realize that we didn’t actually do much living that day? When we decide to live a day at a time we will likely come to the end of each day tired, but with a sense of accomplishment. Living fully in the present is one of the best ways we can say thank you to God for our life, it is a way of showing with our actions that we are unwilling to waste what has been given to us.
Perhaps the best we can do is to take to heart the words of Christ in his Sermon on the Mount:
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will take care of itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6: 33-34)