Monday, 19 December 2016 12:13

Here and Now

Written by Melissa Wood

Here and NowAs I get busy doing all the ‘stuff’ I think needs to be done for Christmas, I’ve become aware of some gentle tugs from Jesus. “Stop rushing.” “No, you don’t need to do that just now.” “Slow down.”

It’s so counter to my own goals and plans. For many of the tasks I have planned, I find myself wanting to ‘just do it, get it over with, get it organised’, especially as it pertains to getting stuff done in advance.

My thinking goes something like this: ‘I’ll do as much as I can now so that it’s all done and so that I don’t have to worry about it and I can relax later.’ It sounds good on the surface and I always thought this kind of approach in life was prudent, smart and even responsible. But as it turns out, not quite.

You see, Jesus has been pointing out to me the subtle fault in my heart. There are some things (in fact many, many things, maybe even everything!) that shouldn’t be treated this way. Life is not meant to be rushed. Some ‘tasks’ shouldn’t even be thought of as merely just a ‘task’. God wants us to walk with Him in everything we do. He has things to show us in everything we undertake in life. Doing the shopping for Christmas is not just a task to ‘get done’ ... it’s a walk with Jesus ... talking with Him and listening to Him along the way: “Jesus, thank you for providing me with resources to buy special food for Christmas.” And then His grace and love for me remind me to share something with those who might be struggling this Christmas.

While I’m out doing the shopping, I’m not just buying items, I’m encountering other people... shoppers, store people, car park attendants, bus drivers, all people who probably have their own struggles this Christmas. What does Jesus say to me about them? How should I treat them?

The other fault in my heart’s logic is the ‘then I can relax afterwards’ part. In this part, the problem is a bit like the farmer who had a bumper crop and wanted to store the grain so that he could sit back with his feet up for the rest of his life (Luke 12:13-21). I find myself wanting the same thing... to be able to sit back, relax and enjoy life, and I try to push through mindlessly all the ‘work’ that needs to be done in order to get there.

But of course, as was the case with the farmer, who died that very night, setting our hearts on the future in that way is illusory ... you only have now. So you’d better find God in the now.

Now, while you’re writing your Christmas cards and God wants you to involve Him in what to write. Now, while you’re doing another load of washing and God wants you to know he’s with you in the gift you make of yourself for your family. Now, while you’re waiting f-o-r-e-v-e-r for a car park and He wants you to know He’s giving you a little time to slow down. Now, when instead of trying to get ahead on your work, He wants you to stop and pray the Rosary with His mother, so you can be strengthened and loved and better able to be the love of Christ to the people around you.

He’s with you here and now... loving you here and now. That’s where our treasure is, and that’s where our hearts should be.