James A. Washington

I remember as a high school senior going to a religious retreat and listening to a recording supposedly between the devil and one of his soul recruiters, who was having little to no luck at populating hell. The devil gave him one more chance to succeed before suffering the vilest of consequences.

The next morning there was a proverbial traffic jam of souls trying to get in. When the devil asked his protégé for his secret to success, the newly crowned supreme capturer of souls said, “I planted an irresistible seed that none of them seem to be able to refuse.” That seed was, “I’ll do it tomorrow.”

You cannot wait until tomorrow to do what you know is right in the eyes of the Lord. You can’t wait until tomorrow to get your life straight, to apologize, to ask for forgiveness. You cannot wait until you’re successful, have a lot of money in the bank, sow your wild oats, before you get it together and live according to the Word of God.

The fallacy of a belief that you’ll do it tomorrow presupposes tomorrow will be there waiting on you, as if you have some control over the time you are allotted and the quality of that time you have here on earth. As much as we know this is true, many of us still find ourselves waiting for tomorrow to really get our act together. All we need is a little more time, or money, or a new opportunity, a new man or a woman, a new relationship or a new job that you’re going to start looking for tomorrow.

No wonder the devil’s protégé was so successful. Once the seed of tomorrow is planted, we dwell on the possibilities of today’s dreams. The do-nothing results will damn your soul for eternity.

Living for tomorrow is not only foolish, it’s dangerous, because we waste God’s greatest gift to us: time. “Give us our daily bread” is what the prayer says. “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.” Proverbs 27:1.  

And think of Luke 12: 13-21, The Parable of the Rich Fool. Here is a guy who in essence saved for his pending retirement. “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barn and build bigger ones, and there I will store all my grains and goods. And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’

God actually calls him a fool and takes his life that very night.

How many folks do you know who wish they had one more day to tell somebody how much they meant to that person? If you should close your eyes tonight never to awaken again, would you regret what you didn’t say to somebody and meant to say yesterday but you’ll get around to it tomorrow and never did?

Or would somebody you know miss you so much because they were going to tell you tomorrow how much they cared about you, but you died last night?

You cannot time the moment of your death anymore than you controlled the moment of your birth. Today, right now, is all you have.

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