"Look here, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we are going to a certain town and will stay there a year. We will do business there and make a profit.' How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog--it's here a little while, then it's gone. What you ought to say is, 'If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.'" (James 4:13-15 NLT)

When I was a boy I dreamed of my future. I was going to be a cowboy. I loved all the old westerns on television. Then I dreamed of being a sailor and a soldier and fighting epic battles. After that I dreamed of being a fire fighter and rescuing people from burning buildings. I just couldn't wait to grow up and be an adult. Then I went to college and those dreams changed. I thought I would be a psychologist, then I switched to being a teacher, and I also wanted to be a best selling author. When I married and had children my dreams of the future changed again.

Now it wasn't so much a certain career that I dreamed of but a time when I could be settled and secure and my family and I would finally be problem free.

That dream, of course, didn't happen. In fact, none of those dreams ever came to life. It took me many years as well to realize that living in a dream future was living in an illusion and that each moment I spent there was taking a moment away from the precious Now. I saw that there could be no perfect, problem free future because problems are a part of life. And I realized that I was wasting my days wishing for some dream to come true when I could be fully living and loving each day God gives me.

It is only in the Now that we can truly live. It is only in the Now that we can truly love. Our dreams for the future are just that: dreams. Whether they come true or not isn't as important as how we live each day God gives us here. A hug shared today can never be replaced. An act of kindness not given now is lost forever. A moment of love missed can never be made up again.

Each second of the Now is precious and priceless. Don't waste a one of them. Embrace them. Live them. Love them all. Always live in the Now with a heart full of love, a soul full of joy, and a life full of kindness.

Joseph J. Mazzella