Don’t wait until “when”

We are fond of thinking that God lives outside of time. That he exists yesterday, today, and in the future. Which he does.

But we don’t.

And since we don’t, God only exists in this moment, to us.

What does this matter?

Let me tell you a story about 2 young women, Amy and Sara. It was summer, and both had graduated from high school and were planning to go to college. It was a beautiful summer. The weather was perfect and people were holidaying and relaxing by the pool and on the beach. There were parties and get-togethers with friends and new friends.

During all this summer fun, Amy noticed that Sara wasn’t always present and that she was sending away resumes, talking on the phone with people in her chosen profession, and even meeting with a few for lunches.

Amy chided Sara, “Just relax! It’s summer. Everyone else is taking a break. You work too hard. We can network and meet with sponsors and do all this work when college begins.”

But when college began in the fall, Amy found that the courses she wanted were already full. The secondary choices were boring and she had no contacts or relationships that she could rely on. She was alone in her classes and she was having a hard time breaking into the professional circles she wanted.

It looked like she might not be able to become what she wanted to until she remembered Sara had all these connections. “I should just talk to Sara!”

Amy asked Sara, “Hey, can you introduce me to the people in our profession so that they can help me too?”

But Sara simply replied, “While you played and partied the summer away I worked hard on building these important relationships. Now you want me to share? No thank you. Best of luck Amy.”

You might recognize this story as a retelling if Aesop’s grasshopper and the ants, a classic story on procrastination. And it is.

But consider procrastination in the context of when God is (yes, when God is).

The idea is subtle, but I think critical to the motivation of meditation. And I’ll get at it by asking a simple question:

What if God doesn’t exist in the future or the past? What if God only exists in the present?

Procrastination is, in its heart, a dependence on the future, a future that Does Not Exist.

God told Moses “I am who I am”, saying in essence that the most important thing to know about me is that I exist. I am the self existing one. For Moses and the Israelites this implied that he was present and therefore able to save his people.

When you or I think, “I’ll do this or that when…” then we are creating a fiction in our minds that is only fantasy.

The word “when” hides a multitude of sins.

I’ll lose weight when…
I’ll forgive when…
I’ll trust when…
I’ll be generous when…
I’ll reach out to her when…

“When” does not exist. For us God does not exist then, he exists now.

He is present to us only in this moment. He is here.

When we rely on “when”, (some unknown inaccessible future state), we steal the power of today and we lose our ability and obligation to be fully with God.

“In him we live and move and have our being.“

Meditation is a way to discipline ourselves to live from that place of being “in” God. When you meditate, you place yourself into the Father’s hands and you really focus on that what exists. Not fantasies or imagined fears of the future, not grief or grudges from the past, but only what exists right now.

And the most important and crucial thing to realize about what exists in this present moment, is that God exists.

Lean forward. God’s about to whisper something to you.

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