The moment when time touches eternity

For most of my life I would wake up in the middle of the night, briefly think about the future, and the thought of an endless forever would send me into a panic attack.

It was awful.  My mind just could not wrap itself around the concept of forever.

Though, for the most part, I didn’t have a fear of tomorrow, or next week, or even next year, that fear of the great unknown future would freak me out.

Our minds are a battleground.  How we direct and control our thoughts is critical.

The present is the point at which time touches eternity. Screwtape Letters  by C.S. Lewis

This week I read a few experts from C. S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters (affiliate link).  There the demon Screwtape points out how God desires for us to live in the present, because the Present is the point at which time touches eternity.  

Have you noticed how your thoughts tend to drift toward what you will do in a few hours, your concerns about the activities of the next day, and fretting about what may or may not happen in the days or even years ahead?

God does want us to plan ahead.  There’s no question about that.  But, he doesn’t want us to live in the future.  And he certainly doesn’t want us to fret or fixate on the unknown.  As Jesus said, Who among you by worrying can add a single moment to your life? If you can’t do such a small thing, why worry about the rest?  Luke 12:25-26 CEV

It’s dangerous to live in the past, as well.  The difference, is that the past, is based on reality.

The demon Screwtape writes (in his reverse speak):  “It is far better to make them live in the Future. Biological necessity makes all their passions point in that direction already, so that thought about the Future inflames hope and fear. Also, it is unknown to them, so that in making them think about it we make them think of unrealities. In a word, the Future is, of all things, the thing least like eternity. It is the most completely temporal part of time—for the Past is frozen and no longer flows, and the Present is all lit up with eternal rays.”  The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis

This idea of the Present being lit up with eternal rays is an interesting thought.

It occurs to me that we do experience more joy, contentment, and freedom when we’re in the moment.  God doesn’t want us to be burdened with worry or care.  He wants us to live in the Present, that place of freedom and joy.  When we think about what God is doing in our lives and talk to him about it, we’re in the Present.  When we think about the character of God….his love,  his power, his beauty, his creativity, and so on, we are in the Present.  When we thank God for his mercy, grace, and gifts, we experience his presence, and that is definitely the Present.  When we walk through pain, and sorrow, and difficulty, we are in the Present.  When we pray for others and serve others we are living in the Present.

When our thoughts and actions are in the Present, we are more in the presence of the Lord than at any other point.

When we allow our thoughts to dwell in the future (and to some degree in the past) we are, in essence, allowing the enemy to drive us away from God.

Queen Anne's Lace :: That Moment when Time Touches Eternity :: AnExtraordinaryDay.net

If you struggle with fear, maybe this little thought journey will help you to gain the perspective you need to overcome the fear.  1 John 4:8 says… Where God’s love is, there is no fear, because God’s perfect love drives out fear.   When we live in the Present…in God…we are living in his love.  And there….there is no place for fear.

The next time we’re in a spot where fear overcomes us…let’s think about God and his love and his goodness.  Let’s replace those fearful thoughts with God thoughts.  Let’s be in the Present.  Not in the next 10 seconds or 10 minutes or 10 years…but now.

Field of wildflowers :: When time touches eternity :: AnExtraordinaryDay.net

My biggest challenge to this will be when the winter roads get icy.  Oh my….that is my challenge.  I’m going to work at staying in the Present and not in the land of the ‘what ifs.’

What’s your biggest challenge?

What will you do to live in the Present?

Oh…and if those “startling awakes” come again in the night?  I’m going to remember this…..

…the Present is the point at which time touches eternity.

Just think.  When we’re in the Present with God, if that’s eternity,  it’s not scary at all.

Joy Day!:: Time Touches Eternity :: AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 It’s Joy Day!

 

Giving thanks is a great way to be in the Present with God.  There’s something amazing that happens to our hearts and our perspectives.

This is my personal invitation to you…

Please join us for Joy Day!

Take a minute look back over the past week and count seven…. the good and not-so-good things from the week and tell God thanks for every one.  It will make your heart sing.

I’ll start!

Thank you God for…

  1. helping me finish a tough post.
  2. farmers’ markets and the deliciousness of the harvest.
  3. a dear friend find something wonderful to celebrate in the midst of loss.
  4. special moments with my husband.
  5. renewing our hope.
  6. my sweet friend’s big healing turn around.
  7. for a new year and the blessings received from friends.

 Now it’s YOUR turn!

Join me in counting seven!
Scroll down to the comment section and list your “seven.”
I dare you!

Want even more joy?  Take the Joy Dare here.

Joyfully!

Diane

P.S.  Close your eyes and imagine the early morning sun streaming down on a field of white Queen Anne’s Lace and blue Chicory.  More than you have ever seen at one time and glowing in depth and beauty.  That was the picture I was trying to capture to share with you.  Unfortunately, as much as I tried, I was unable to capture the glorious moment.   These photos are but a mere hint.  I guess that’s what nature is when comparing it to God’s beauty….just a mere hint.

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Comments

  1. I remember when I first got saved how obsessed I was in dwelling on eternity and forever, and it would cause me to fear. I can’t say that I quite have a handle on the emotions that happen when I try to think of eternity, but I’ve come a long way. I’ve been walking a hard road and thought, “I have no joy to share”, but here I am forcing myself to dig deep for joy!
    1. Great review products to share on my blog.
    2. 2 new books to read from a friend (to add to my ever growing stack)
    3. Ben & Jerry’s New York Super Fudge (because some days you just need it)
    4. Hugs from a friend.
    5. A new hair cut and color (hiding the grey)
    6. Suffering, but not without hope.
    7. God speaking to me through the night sky.

    • Ah my friend….I know that place where you are and how much it helps to work on being grateful. It’s such a balm to the soul. Thanks for taking the time to share your “seven.” Praying that God’s provision is more than you can ask or imagine and that the peace that passes understanding will guard your mind in Christ Jesus. [hugs]

  2. thank You Jesus for
    1–praying people–all those who prayed for us as we went to 97 year old Dad’s funeral in Arkansas
    2–that Dad is with you and no longer in pain
    3–for treasures we brought home from Dad’s apt.–2 more antique furniture pieces, the lamp with stained glass shade dad had made
    4– for memories of Dad and Mom who we lost in Jan. all over our house
    5–for how blessed I was to have Mom and Dad for my parents-in-love—not in-law for over 47 years
    6–for their awesome daughter Barb–my sweet sis-in-love and her great husband Tim
    7 that Allen chose me over 47 years ago to be part of this wonderful family!

    • Glenda…how wonderful to have been blessed with the gift of family in such great measure. God is good. I have no doubt that they were thrilled to call you “daughter” as well.
      May your week be filled with joy!!

  3. Debbi Saunders says:

    Goodmorning Diane,
    I think my greatest fear is not be able to discern God’s will from my own there by getting out of His timing and Will and suffering the consequences! I Loved your post today!
    Thank You God:
    l. For the wonderfully Blessed Day that I had yesterday!!!
    2.For starting to experience greater peace in my situation…
    3.That you have been paving the way and guiding my son Jordan…
    4. For all the prayer support I am receiving in this situation with my Home…
    5. For giving me renewed Hope!
    6. For your presence and guidence in an ugly situation at School that you helped me to handle well.
    7. For the wonderful serendipitous opportunity I had Thursday night to have a meal and spend time with my son! it was unexpected surprise!
    I hope everyone enjoys the Labor Day Weekend, relaxing,renewing and enjoying!!! <3

    • Debbi…I so identify with wanting to be in God’s will. There always seems to be a tension there between my wants and his best. Why do we feel like we “settle” for his best? Thanks for the kind words and for taking time to share your ‘seven.’ God has been blessing you in so many wonderful and unexpected ways. Hope your weekend was just what you needed. [hugs]

  4. This post is beautiful, Diane! It is soon hard to stay in the present but it is definitely where we should live. Your pictures are stunning so I can imagine how beautiful the scene was. Wow!

  5. Diane,
    Thank you for bringing back to the fore-front God’s goodness, grace and mercy for our lives. With everyday ups and downs, it’s quite easy to think of the future and what we want to happen, etc.
    My seven Thank You Gods are:
    1. My daughter having safe travels on the road with my Grandchildren for the holiday
    2. Spending time with my family all weekend.
    3. Enabling me to discern His voice
    4. Providing words of encouragement to others
    5. Patience in my season of singleness
    6. Forgiving me during the times I didn’t read my Bible regularly
    7. Gentle direction/confirmation in a situation I asked for guidance in.

    Thanks again for being a vessel, Diane.

    Have a wonderful week full of laughter and blessings!

    • Vivian you have such a joy-filled heart. 🙂 Thank you so much for joining us today and counting seven. May your week overflow with God’s goodness in unexpected moments and unbelievable measure.
      Blessings!

  6. Wonderful devotional!!

  7. I’m a sensory kinda gal. The photos….ohmygosh, talk about a bit of heaven. That first one and the Joy Day one…..perfection, to be sure.

    And my joys?
    Being invited by a five year old who wants to show off her scooter/bike riding expertise.
    The coworker that decorated my world with a huge paper web and paper spiders.
    Friday funday cteativity at the worksite.
    Sunlight breaking the horizon.
    Being able to take time away to go exploring with himself.
    The daisies in the blue mason jar.
    Knowing I don’t have to do anything alone.
    Being loved, deeply, warts and all.
    Halloween decorations….ANY cute ones!!
    Colour in bushes…It’s sneaking in!!
    Being grateful in my heart, not just my head.
    My JOYS list….and adding to it as they find me again and again. I’m graced.

    • Then you can imagine my delight upon seeing the field as I walked down the country road. I carefully stepped around some poison ivy (you know my favorite plant!!) to get some photos. I was like a kid in a candy shop. The lighting was exquisite, too. Nothing like a sea of white and blue flowers to make this girl’s heart sing!

      Mel…thanks for sharing your joys!! I love how you delight in the smallest of things and the goodness around you. Thanks for putting a smile on my face today! Big Hugs!!!

  8. Living in the now can be so tough, but it really is the point in time when I feel closest to God. You explained this well in your post! Here are my 7 thanks:
    1. For a chance to minister to a friend in need
    2. For continued hope in overcoming a hard situation I’ve been dealing with
    3. For making good connections with new people
    4. For my mom who makes me feel so loved
    5. For my daily devotional, Jesus Calling, which is so inspiring to me
    6. For my weekly prayer emails between close friends
    7. For both sunny skies and awesome thunderstorms

    • Laura…you are right….it’s truly something we need to be conscious of doing.
      Thank you so much for stopping by and for taking the time to share your ‘seven.’ Isn’t it amazing how blessed we are? God is so good.
      May your week overflow with JOY!

  9. Thank you for the opportunity Diane, maybe something I should do everyday – here’s mine:
    1. Salvation – that we can KNOW we will be the Father
    2. A husband who takes wonderful care of me
    3. The Lords healing for my nephew and hope for his mom
    4. The cool breeze coming thru the house right now
    5. Finding such an uplifting blogger this evening 😉
    6. A full tank of gas and a gift card to Hobby Lobby
    7. When the clouds are pink in the evening and reflect themselves in the swimming pool- looks like fluffy cotton candy floating in the pretty blue pool

    • Valarie, it’s surely a wonderful discipline. 🙂 Thanks for taking the time to join us in sharing your ‘seven.’ I love your description of the clouds at sunset this evening.
      May your week overflow with JOY!

  10. Beautifully well put, Diane – I agree completely – I’m going to save this and share with a friend! I do appreciate you sharing with Home and Garden Thursday,
    Kathy

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