I’ve gotten (and I’m sure given) some terrible advice in my life, but perhaps none so damning as what I recently overheard someone give to another. They said, “Relax. Breathe. All we have is now.” While focusing on and maximizing each moment is something I can get behind, telling someone “all we have is now” does a horrible disservice to their eternal soul.
This brief life is not all there is. What comes next matters infinitely more than anything you or I will ever do in this life. To live as if all we have is now is to deceive ourselves and to reject God’s Word. This life is not all there is. What comes next is the reward or the consequence of how we live right now.
For those who proclaim Jesus is Lord and live a life surrendered to Him, what comes next is a glorious blessing after all the difficulties of this life. Thank God right now is not all there is. Look around — death, sickness, violence, evil, and deceit surround us. This is what is here and now. There is nothing good. Sin has corrupted all of God’s perfect and marvelous creation. The planet and all it contains groans for salvation from the darkness and weight of sin (Romans 8:20-23). If all we have is now, there would be no reason for tomorrow.
Thank God there is a reason for tomorrow. There is a reason for hope. Now is passing away and all we have is an eternity to spend in peace and perfection with Jesus or in torment and decay with the devil and his demons (Matthew 25:41). The purpose of this life is to bring glory to God. Our lives are to be spent in worship of Him, not ourselves, not our money, not our status, nothing but God alone. This is how we will spend eternity as well. But if we don’t do it in this life, we will never have the opportunity to do it at all.
Make no mistake, this life is brief, shorter than any person thinks it is. As Dave Ramsey is fond of saying, “They’ve done the research, and 100% of people have died”. No one gets out of here alive. Without Jesus, life on earth is pointless. With Him, life is full of purpose and mission. If you waste your life now, you will receive the punishment for ignoring God: you will die, and you will go to Hell. That is where you will spend eternity. There is no coming back from that.
If all we have is now, we are doomed and lost. This world is passing away (1 John 2:16-17). Everything you know will die or be destroyed. That doesn’t have to be you. Jesus came to save us from that dreadful certainty. He loves you and desires to have a relationship with you. Our part is to receive His incredible gift of salvation, accept His Lordship by surrendering our selfish lives to His will, and proclaim His gospel. If we will do this, then all we will have is Jesus. And that is more than we could ever hope for. Jesus is all we will ever need.