to be present in the present

Have you ever considered the complex difficulty of living one’s life fully in the present? Every time I think I’m focusing on the moment, I realize half my brain is wandering into the immediate past, the distant future, or some other realm unknown. Of course, the present is made from the past and is always in motion, moving toward the future. So it’s hard to isolate “today” from “yesterday” and “tomorrow.” Some would say impossible.

And perhaps it is impossible. I’m not sure that when Jesus told us to “take no thought for the morrow,” he meant to blot every anticipation or plan from our minds. Like many aspects of life, living in the now requires a careful balance of past and future. To live fully in today, you must acknowledge the past (but not hold onto it like a two-year-old grips his security blanket). You must plan for the future (but not obsess over it to the point of tearing out your hair). You have to forgive past wrongs and let the people around you have a new chance – today. You have to make your plans for the future and then release them like a bird from your hand – to fly or fall as they may. Then you have to pour your heart into the people, the tasks, and the places around you today. Give and receive from them. Have fun, be still, or get to work, as the moment demands.

This is my best guess at how to live the cliché, “Make every moment count.” I have less than two weeks with the girls of Wittlingen dorm, and that’s what I’m trying to do.


4 Responses

  1. Yes, that is totally me too, living only half in the present and rehearsing past or futuristic moments in my mind; it makes me miss the ability to make every moment count too. Thanks for this great reminder. It’s always so hard to leave a place that has come to mean a lot to you.

  2. Good things to keep in mind over the next few months before I head home. I’ve already caught myself almost “missing” friends/relatives here before I’ve even left them! Crazy. And I’m dreading the actual leavetaking even if I will enjoy so many aspects of being back “home.” So, yeah, balance.

  3. Would somebody please tell me what URI is? Can’t find it in any of my computer books. HELP!

  4. […] 7, 2009 by jessicaboling Sometimes I like to reread old journal entries. Okay, often I like to. Almost every time I write in my paper journal, I flip backward to reread […]

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