A golden opportunity?

News broke earlier this week that Samoa is to fast forward by one day in order to improve its ability to trade with Australia and New Zealand. By the start of 2012, instead of being 21 hours behind Sydney, it will be 3 hours ahead of it. One quick step across the International Date Line – and a day is lost!

This got me thinking – if I could lose one whole day, what would I schedule on that day so that it would never happen?  For some it might be an awkward staff review, for others a knotty sermon they would rather not preach. The possibilities are endless. What if we could just “fast forward” past today and get on with tomorrow? Some might be particularly keen to do it today, with old-fashioned superstitions about Friday 13th still alive and well in the 21st Century.

The thing is, we only ever meet God today, don’t you think? Yesterday’s encounters are already gone, and tomorrow’s haven’t happened yet. Today is the day of grace and opportunity when the kingdom is near.  Yesterday I was involved in discussion for a preacher’s conference around a possible theme of ‘preaching in the wilderness’. Sometimes the text is barren, sometimes the context in which it is preached is barren, and sometimes the desert is in the depths of the preacher’s own soul. Always, though, God is here today – so don’t waste it longing for tomorrow.

I’ve always admired Bill Gates’ phrase ‘I can’t wait for tomorrow, and I’m doing everything I can to make it happen’. On reflection, though, I’m not so sure…

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