Happy November 2015! It was a good October and I’m glad it’s over. Between a visit to Idaho for conference weekend, the surprise Disneyland trip, Becky’s parents in town for a week, and all the Halloween stuff, I’m pretty exhausted. But, since I’m working on practicing the “one day at a time” philosophy, that’s where I am today.
I’ve studied about this before, but want to research more about the “one day at a time” thought process.
Questions that come to mind:
- Why one day at a time?
- Does God live by this philosophy?
- Did Christ live by this philosophy when he was on the earth?
- Does the Church teach this idea?
- What does looking back or looking too far ahead do to my mindset?
- Are there examples of living one day at a time in the scriptures?
The first reference I’ll look into is one that I’m aware of – the talk by Elder Christofferson titled, “Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread.”
It’s interesting because he starts off the talk mentioning that we are often given the advice as youth to plan ahead, take this class, major in that, save, plan, prepare, form habits, and look to the future. He states that these are good ideas and the intent is great, BUT
“Thoughtful planning and preparation are key to a rewarding future, but we do not live in the future—we live in the present.”
This reminds me of the statement in the 12 Step manual by Elder Maxwell: (not sure if this is the one, but I liked it)
The past of each of us is now inflexible. We need to concentrate on what has been called “the holy present,”for now is sacred; we never really live in the future. The holy gift of life always takes the form of now. Besides, God asks us now to give up only those things which, if clung to, will destroy us!
As I was looking for the quote from Elder Maxwell, I found this quote in one of his talks – made me think of what other religions probably tell their followers about our beliefs (indirectly at least):
“Do not dare to read the Book of Mormon seriously, or you may suddenly realize that it is inlaid with incredibly important insights from a millennium of sacred history.”
“Do not read what the holiest inhabitant ever to live on this planet said about the necessity of certain ordinances, or you will see that he allowed for no exceptions, including himself.”
“Do not be fully honest about the hypocrisy of those in the Church who may pretend to be better than they are,or you will soon realize that there is also another form of hypocrisy—appearing to be less committed than one really is!”
This is a great scripture about living today found in Joshua 24:15:
And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, achoose you bthis day whom ye will cserve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my dhouse, we will eserve theLord.
Here’s another scripture that references living today:
As I looked more for the quote from Elder Maxwell, I found these quotes in his talk titled, “The Great Plan of the Eternal God.”
…most human misery represents ignorance of or noncompliance with the plan [of happiness].
How true that is for me. All of my misery and endless wo, all of my hatred and enmity and resentment, all of this came because I was being noncompliant to the plan of happiness I knew to be right.
I really like this quote too:
Hence, in submitting knowingly and meekly to this plan,we cannot say to the Lord that we are willing to surrender but only on our terms. There are no conditions in unconditional surrender!
This reminds me of the thought I had when working with one of my sponsees who seemed to think he was an exception to the rules of the 90 day program – his case was different, he didn’t have to and wasn’t able to write morning and night, especially due to his circumstances that were “different” than any of the rest of us.
I’m sure, in my blinded state, I’ve felt that way too. My case was different. The reason I was acting out in my addiction is because of this and that which were totally justified. I needed something more or different than other believers in Jesus Christ.
Blahhh! This is so untrue. This is such a lie from a follower of Satan. But, thanks to a loving Heavenly Father, today I’m not that person.
Submitting my will to God, surrendering to His way of doing things, has to be on His terms. I can’t submit my will and then take it back all the time.
And amen to this scripture:
Wherefore, men are afree according to the bflesh; andcall things are dgiven them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to echoose fliberty and eternal glife, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might behmiserable like unto himself. (2 Nephi 2:27)
This is interesting too:
In coming back to the talk by Elder Christofferson, this quote really hits home:
It is day by day that we work out our plans for the future; it is day by day that we achieve our goals. It is one day at a time that we raise and nurtureour families. It is one day at a time that we overcomeimperfections. We endure in faith to the end one day ata time. It is the accumulation of many days well-lived that adds up to a full life and a saintly person.
There couldn’t really be a more clear answer on why we are to live one day at a time.
But let me dig a little deeper.
I really like this quote too:
As we seek and receive divine bread daily, our faith and trust in God and His Son grow.
I thought of this yesterday as Brother Evans and Camden were sharing about the parable of the 10 virgins. That parable is about living today, living in the moment.
For all we know, the 5 virgins that weren’t ready on the day of the bridegroom may have been ready other days. They may have just ran out. But the past didn’t matter, nor did the future really. It was about the “now.”
“Can ye feel so now?”
When they tried to come to the bridegroom after they realized they weren’t prepared, he stated for them to leave because he didn’t even know them.
It made me think about what a testimony is and why it’s important. A testimony, to me, today, is all about my relationship with God and His Son. How well do I know them today? What have I done today to connect with them in a personal way? Either I’m moving closer to them through submission and surrender, or I’m pulling away, “coasting downhill,” as I think I can do things on my own or that I’m an “exception to the rule.”
Salvation and surrender are a day to day process – a “one day at a time” event. An “eternal present.”
The story of the manna for the people in Egypt is such a direct representation of the “one day at a time” concept.
[God] was teaching them to trust Him, to“look unto [Him] in every thought; doubt not, fear not”(D&C 6:36). He was providing enough for one day at a time.
…the children of Israel had to walk with Him today and trust that He would grant a sufficient amount of food for the next day on the next day, and so on. In that way He could never be too far from their minds and hearts.
That last sentence is another answer: the reason I need to live one day at a time is so I can stay close to the Savior and the Father. If I go a day without surrendering to them and seeking their guidance, who knows how far I’ll slide down the slippery path that Satan has laid for all who choose to follow him.
I’m grateful that, today, I’m willing to submit my will to the will of the Father. I’m grateful that today, I want to live in recovery.
I’m grateful that, today, I will put my trust in Him and not look back or look too far ahead.
This is a great reminder too:
Asking God for our daily bread, rather than our weekly, monthly, or yearly bread, is also a way to focus us on the smaller, more manageable bits of a problem. To deal with something very big, we may need to work at it in small, daily bites. Sometimes all we can handle is one day (or even just part of one day) at a time.
I can’t run faster than I’m able. I can only take things one moment at a time.
I look forward to today and to what I can do today to submit my will to Him.