Today Not Tomorrow

“This is the day which the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

— Psalm 118:24

How is your day going so far? Are you enjoying it, unfettered by regrets about the past and worries about the future? Or do you find your mind focused on everything else but this day?

When I wake up each morning, I like to quote aloud Psalm 118:24—“This is the day which the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” We need to focus on the present moment. The psalmist encourages us to seize the day … the moment … and rejoice and be glad in it. We can’t leave our happiness in the past, thinking our best days are behind us. Nor should we wait until tomorrow to rejoice. Today, at this very moment, we must be glad because this day and this moment are gifts from God.

Enjoying each day is like the art of reading aloud. When you read aloud, you must pay attention to each word you read as you read it, putting the appropriate emphasis and nuance on every word to impact the hearer as you desire. You cannot let your thoughts race three or four words ahead of the words you are presently saying. Doing so causes the words to lose their meaning and impact. Similarly, do not think about rejoicing tomorrow. Such thoughts cause today to lose its importance in your life. Instead, think about rejoicing today … and do it.

Why can we be so free to think only of today? Because, unlike the atheistic existentialist who blocks out the past and the future, the Christian can perceive and enjoy past and future events for their own value. Christians can look to the past—to the Crucifixion and the Resurrection—and rejoice in forgiveness, cleansing from sin, and spiritual renewal. Christ has disposed of sin, shame, and guilt. As Christians we can trust Christ with our past, knowing that He has erased our transgressions and made us new persons in His family. Our salvation is great cause for celebrating today.

In the same way, we can rejoice today because we trust Christ with our future. As Christians we look ahead and boldly affirm the glorious tomorrow that awaits us. We eagerly anticipate Christ’s return, an event that will usher in freedom from pain, fear, and death. The sovereign Lord has tomorrow in His hands, and He works all things together for good. We can rely on that truth. Today, lay your feelings about yesterday and your anxieties about tomorrow at Christ’s feet. Trust Him with your past and with your future, and rejoice in each moment of this day, a gift from God to you.

“Live in day-tight compartments.”
Sir William Osler