There is something about the concept of “now” that is difficult for most people to understand. We often do better with “tomorrow,” or “next week,” or “sometime.” Those designations give us space. "Now" demands immediate attention, requires action, forces responsibility and puts us on the spot. "Now" makes us accountable. "Now" is present and it is unavoidable.
NOW VS. LATER
Anything that is later rather than now gives us breathing room because we have time before we have to act, and are thus accountable for something. Later may put us on notice, but does not put us on the spot. Later gives us the chance to plan, to avoid, to postpone, to do nothing, to do anything but take action. Later is comfortable, but now is kind of scary.
As a result, we do our best to avoid the “now,” and to live our lives according to “later.” It is easier, and is certainly less stressful.
It is also far less productive.
Scripture indicates God is really more inclined toward the now. He tells us, “Now is the time for salvation.” He told Moses His Name is “I Am,” which is a very present-tense name. God says He is a present tense God. He knows the past, He even knows the future, He is not limited by time, but He chooses to be called by a Name focused on the now. Jesus told a story about a rich man who hoarded his resources for the future but neglected the present. He did not live to enjoy or to impact the future, and he was said to be foolish for his sacrificing the now for the later.
There is no doubt God is concerned about the future. In fact, the longterm future (eternity) is what is most important. God seems to make it clear in scripture the way to best prepare for that eternal future is to give appropriate attention to the present. God wants us to live in the light of eternity, which will make us attentive to what we do now. Just to be clear….
- Now is the day of salvation.
- Now is the time to forgive and stop holding a grudge.
- Now is the time to make disciples.
- Now is the time to be a witness and share your faith.
- Now is the time to use your gifts for His service.
- Now is the time to reach unreached people groups.
- Now is the time to love your neighbor and even love your enemy.
- Now is the time to be obedient in tithing 10% and faithfully using the other 90%.
- Now is the time to be a servant of all, for the sake of Christ.
- Now is the time to go and to send others so the whole world knows the Savior.
- Now is the time to make God the priority of your life.
- Now is the time to live and give sacrificially.
- Now is the time to live a holy life.
- Now is the time to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength.