You Are Here

If you want to find out where you are, you need some sort of reference point. A lighthouse on a hill, a beacon by which you are able to navigate. Lets call this beacon “the future”. It represents where you are heading, the person you want to become, and the achievements you hope to attain.

But, one reference point is not enough. Navigators will tell you that in order to know what direction you are traveling, you need a second reference point. Lets call this point “the past”. It’s where you’ve come from, and it helps to give you your bearings.

You see, before we can see where we’re going we need to know where we came from.

And so, want to know where you are?

You are here.

Smack bang between your future and your past, and it’s called “the present”.

Sometimes we forget that that’s where we exist, and we find ourselves living in two extremes. On the one hand we live only for the future, discarding the lessons and wisdom learnt from the past. We spend so much time dreaming about what could be, that we miss out on what actually is.

On the other hand we dwell too long on the past and fall into the trap of “traditionalism” – doing things a certain way simply because that’s how we’ve always done them. Because we’re looking behind us all the time, we miss out on what is in front of us.

I have always found this tension hard to manage. Because of how I’m wired I am always looking to the “next thing”, and so often I find myself missing out on the present. Perhaps for you, you find yourself talking about “the good ol’ days” a bit too much.

The challenge however, for all of us, is to acknowledge the past, have dreams for the future, but most of all, engage in the present! As Albert Camus wrote:

“Real generosity toward the future consists of giving all to what is present.”

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10 Comments on “You Are Here

  1. hey man
    cool dragon rings – i’ll take one… shot for the commentage on my blog – just looking thru yours and we seem to touch on some similiar topics – busy writing a book called ‘i kissed hating [the church] goodbye’ as church is one of my passions – um you can delete this comment by the way, just was a place for me to answer your question – i think on your dashboard you look for appearance down the left hand side and go to WIDGETS and there you can add a bunch of stuff and i think it may have been there altho it looks like you’ve already added a bunch of stuff so may not be that – um ah no wait its under SETTINGS on left and then SHARING and then you can choose which ones you want to add… let me know if it doesn’t work
    God bless you as you bless others man
    love b

  2. hey tom, very cool blog about the Present. I also find myself looking towards the “next thing”
    well, why all these youth pastors are doing introductions, I will too…
    I am Darrel, youth pastor too.

    I am based in the UK (Bicester, near Oxford) at the moment.
    use to work for the methodist church for 8 years back in SA.

    been awesome serving God.
    I blog here: http://darrelhoff.wordpress.com/

    maybe a little bit different to you and Brett. I write about God, oddity of life, people and things inbetween. :)

    • Thanks for the comment Darrel, and always great to chat to and connect with other pastors… All the best

  3. So… weirdly enough randomly came across your blog (through no one in particular just browsing on word press) only to discover so had Darrel and Brett (who I also know through blogging/church)
    Anyway, I have recently posted something on the future and this post of yours gave me another insight into the idea of future. I often forget that im living in the present and get caught up in the whirlwind of my prospective future and issues from the past. So a HUUUGE thank you to you for blogging this, it has really put some things into perspective. :)

    • Hey Zoe. Thanks for reading and your comments. I too always find living in the present a constant tension! Happy blogging!

  4. I love living in the NOW and all of the moments Now. Yesterday is gone, tomorrow will come, and the future is up to God. I wake each day and give thanks to God that he gave me another day to glorify Him. This is nuts, I read one blog post of yours, and now I am on like the sixth! I just seem addicted to your talent for writing. I hope I am a talented blogger and book reviewer and would love you to stop by at http://getreadingnow.org :) Jackie

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