ONE DAY AT A TIME
Friends, March 4, 1996 is my sobriety date. On that day, I heard “One Day at a Time” for the first time, and it helped me through some very difficult times over the past 27 years of my recovery journey. Yesterday was one of those days. It was very hard, because a fellow Christ-follower said some things to me that I let hurt me deeply. He will never know just how bad I was hurting. It is not for me to tell him. But it was so very painful, and the wound went deep. I got though yesterday by falling back on this way of getting through any difficult situation: One Day at a Time. I knew I just had to get to the end of the day, that I would close my eyes, sleep, and today would be a new day, with an opportunity to start over. Sure enough, it happened. Here I am, awake, refreshed, feeling great again, ready to serve Christ, and all those He sends my way. Praise God!
CHRIST CARRIES US
Dear child, I carried you through yesterday. I will also carry you through today. Lean on me. My yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Yes, Lord. You always lighten our load. No matter what the trouble we face, we can always turn to you. No matter how bad we are hurting, you help us in our pain. Thank you for your comfort, and the hope you give us. We have a momentary affliction, called life on earth. There are many ups and downs, but you smooth out our way forward, each day closer to you, until you bring us home to Heaven where we belong.
Child, you don’t belong here yet. Right now, you belong right where I have you, to do my will on earth.
Yes, Lord. I stand corrected. I am right where I am supposed to be, and with you, I can get through anything, one day at a time, and sometimes, one hour at a time, or one minute at a time.
GUIDANCE FROM SCRIPTURE
As Christ-followers, this simple phrase can help us in our walk with the Lord Jesus. Each day presents an opportunity to grow closer to Him and learn to rely on His strength. The Bible offers wisdom and guidance for taking life one day at a time.
Daily Dependence on God: Jesus, in the Sermon on the Mount, tells us not to worry about tomorrow: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (Matthew 6:34 NIV). Here, Jesus emphasizes the importance of focusing on today and placing our trust in God. And, let’s not get ahead of ourselves for it is written: “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.” (Proverbs 27:1 NIV)
Daily Time with God’s Word: Setting aside time each day to read and meditate on God’s Word is vital. The Psalmist writes, “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path” (Psalm 119:105 NIV). Just as a lamp illuminates one step at a time, God’s Word guides us through each day, providing the wisdom and insight we need. But, we need to feed “daily.” Recall this: “Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day. In this way I will test them and see whether they will follow my instructions.’” (Exodus 16:4 NIV) Let’s not eat yesterday’s bread. The Lord bakes a fresh loaf for us every day!
Daily Prayer: Our prayers are a direct line of communication with God. It’s how we cultivate our relationship with Him. Paul reminds us in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 NIV to “pray continually.” Through prayer, we surrender our worries and concerns to God and find peace that surpasses understanding (Philippians 4:7 NIV).
Daily Bearing Fruit: As Christ-followers, our daily walk should be characterized by bearing spiritual fruit. Jesus says, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). Abiding in Christ daily enables us to bear the fruit of the Spirit, such as love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).
Daily Serving Others: Jesus set the ultimate example of serving others. He said, “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). Each day is an opportunity to serve others in love, thereby reflecting Christ’s love to the world.
Daily Community and Fellowship: Engaging in fellowship with other believers is essential. “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another…” (Hebrews 10:24-25). A community of believers provides support and encouragement for our daily walk.
Daily Leaning on Christ: We should always go to Christ with all things in life, but in times of difficultly, we can be thankful, because we have a place to turn: “Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens.” (Psalm 68:19 NIV) Also from Psalms: “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12 NIV)
Daily Humility in Planning: Finally, this concept of One Day at a Time can also help with planning. I have often hear it said that is we want to make God laugh, show him your plans. There is nothing wrong in planning; it is an important part of life. But we have to keep “our” plans in perspective, as it is written: “Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’” (James 4:13-15 NIV)
All, notice “Daily” starts every point made here. Taking life one day at a time as Christ-followers means “daily” abiding in Jesus, “daily” seeking wisdom through Scripture, praying continually “daily”, bearing spiritual fruit “daily”, serving others “daily”, and “daily” engaging in community. As Lamentations 3:22-23 NIV reminds us, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Let us press on with hearts set on Jesus, embracing each day with faith and expectation, remembering to ask: “Give us today our daily bread.” (Matthew 6:11 NIV) Finally, may we also remember: “But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31 NIV)
Lord, what would you add to all that I wrote this morning?
Child, “if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV)
Yes, Lord, may we humble ourselves before you, and seek you with all our heart, each and every day, until you bring us home to heaven. And Lord, forgive those who hurt us. They don’t fully know what they are doing. And please forgive us, for we don’t know fully what we are doing, either. Amen.
Your aspiring servant, living one day at a time,
4 July 2023
POSTSCRIPT: Dear friends, if this daily, transparent conversation with God blesses you, please go to www.SOLIDpastors.org, where you will find these posted, and a repository of all, in English and Spanish. If you ever want to chat, you can reach me at Daniel@SOLIDpastors.org. May Christ bless you richly as you have your own intimate, daily Conversations with Christ.