Live in the Present.

Oftentimes when people advise us to “live in the present” we sense hedonistic undertones. “Eat, drink, and be happy for tomorrow we die”, a phrase taken from the Bible – is twisted to mean we should have no concern for the consequences of our actions but live for pleasure. However, the present is not simply for pleasure but for building virtue. Living in the past can limit our motivation and fill us with regret. Imagining a grand or miserable future can lead to fear or naïve expectations. The present is when the work of God can be done, where virtue is formed, and where freedom is found.

As mothers we have relevant concerns with the future and the past shapes our perspectives and habits – but what we do today – with the precious child before us at this moment – is what ultimately matters. Let’s live this moment before us and be glad in it.

Some quotes on the value of living in the Present.

The best preparation for the future is the present well seen to, and the last duty done.” George MacDonald

“The most painful state of being is remembering the future, particularly the one you’ll never have.”
― Søren Kierkegaard

This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it (Psalm 118: 24).

“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6:34

“He therefore, I believe, wants them to attend chiefly to two things, to eternity itself, and to that point of time, which they call the Present. For the Present is the point at which time touches eternity. Of the present moment, and of it only, humans have an experience analogous to the experience which [God] has of reality as a whole; in it alone freedom and actuality are offered them. He would therefore have them continually concerned either with eternity or with the Present–either meditating on their eternal union with, or separation from, Himself, or else obeying the present voice of conscience, bearing the present cross, receiving the present grace, giving thanks for the present pleasure.” C.S. Lewis

“The future, good or ill, was not forgotten, but ceased to have any power over the present. Health and hope grew strong in them, and they were content with each good day as it came, taking pleasure in every meal, and in every word and song.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

“The future is a blank wall on which every man can write his own name as large as he likes.” G.K. Chesterton

“Wipe out the imagination. Stop the pulling of the strings…. Think of your last hour. Let the wrong that is done by a man stay there where the wrong was done.” Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

“We live only in the present, in this fleet-footed moment. The rest is lost and behind us, or ahead of us and may never be found. Marcus Aurelius, Emperors Handbook

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