Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

Recently I woke up thinking, “I feel like I’m watching a long movie and I missed a lot of what already happened and my brain is trying to figure out what I missed which puts me in danger of missing what’s happening in the moment.”

When I shared these thoughts with my husband, he said, “Yeah, and add in the fact that we face an unknown future. It’s an apt description of what it feels like in the midst of big changes.”

Then in my morning reading, I came across this quote:

“Remember the past with gratitude. Live the present with enthusiasm. Look forward to the future with confidence.” 

– Pope St. John Paul II

It’s easy to remember the past through the lens of regret rather than gratitude. My own past has substantially more reasons for gratitude than for regret. When I remember that I’ve been given everything I need, how much love has always surrounded me, along with epiphanies of beauty and majesty, I am overcome with gratitude and know how good life is.

Gratitude helps me embrace the present with enthusiasm too. When I’m caught up in sad memories, I’m unable to enter in fully to the here and now. It’s not as if the sadness is to be denied, but rather that it be assigned to its appropriate place. “That was then, this is now.” How freeing it is to be enthusiastically here right now experiencing all life has to offer today, including all the feelings!

To be fully present now I must lay aside fears and anxieties concerning the future, entrusting them into the care of the One whose mercy is everlasting. Knowing that “That will be, this is now.” I look forward to the future with unshakeable confidence.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

Hebrews 13:8

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