“Today’s trouble is enough for today.”
— Matthew 6:34b (NRSV)
Battling with my diet seems to be the last frontier in achieving self-control over my desires. It’s quite a common problem. But God reminded me very recently that the solution to this problem remains in staying in the day. Indeed, that is the solution to many of our problems—just staying in the day.
Staying in the day has both literal and metaphorical discourses of meaning.
Staying in the 24-hour period we find ourselves in, and having goals of simply succeeding by maintaining our resolve just for a few hours more, one day at a time, is such a simple solution. That’s the literal meaning.
The metaphorical meaning is just as poignant. Staying in the day is about staying in the moment; a discipline any of us can get better at. This is the only place there is true peace of existential value. And as Jesus says in Matthew 6:34, this day’s trouble (read, “this moment”) is verily enough on its own.
It’s all we need to manage.
Honing in on Simplicity
There are many who are anxious beyond an easy fix. But, then again, there are many people who can be helped in their anxiousness by simply implementing this advice.
It is ancient advice. It’s so simple we very often run over it in trying to bring our own nuance of meaning to what must be left simple. Our best advice is to leave it as it is.
Honing in on simplicity—having the faith not to think too much on problems—knowing when, and importantly, how, to surrender anxious feelings—is a golden psychological technique based in Jesus’ wisdom.
It takes courage to let go sometimes. This is a courage born of faith. This is a faith that rests in the wisdom of obeying God despite many temptations to worry.
There is no shortage of opportunities to worry.
When we recognise that fact, afresh, and we need to train ourselves each day this way, we arrive back at simplicity; to make things no harder than they need to be. We are reminded to get back to patient calmness, and from there, respond to life’s situations.
Staying safely in the day is our most important opportunity. God helps us via his Presence of Peace that remains in our hearts when we remain calmly surrendered in the moment. Serenity is close. Jesus is near. The answer to worry is simple. Stay safely in the day.
© 2013 S. J. Wickham.