LIVING IN THE ETERNAL NOW: A VERY PRESENT HELP IN TROUBLE
LIVING IN THE ETERNAL NOW A VERY PRESENT HELP IN TROUBLE By Dr Ian Ellis-JonesHere are two Bible verses that have always meant a lot to me, even though myunderstanding of the verses has changed considerably over the years.First, Psalm 46: 1, which says, ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present help introuble.’Second, Isaiah 26:3, which says, ‘You [God] will keep them in perfect peace, whose mindsare stayed on You …’I do not believe in some anthropomorphic God ‘up there’ or ‘out there.’ Such a ‘God’---orrather an image of God---is nothing other than a human construct, and not a very goodone at that. For me, God is the presence and power---the very ‘livingness’---of the EternalNow as it unfolds unceasingly from one moment to the next.We live fully---indeed, we can only be said to be truly alive---when we live and move andhave our being, that is, are fixed and focused, in the reality of the Now.The verse from Psalms affirms that this God---if you choose to use that word at all---ofwhich I speak is our ‘refuge’ and ‘strength’ and a ‘very present help in trouble.’That is indeed the case. The only power that can be ours is that which is found in thereality of the present moment. That is the only ‘place’ in which we can find rest and peaceand solace. It is the only ‘place’ wherein we can find help in time of trouble, for if we seekthat help in the past or in the future we look in vain. Indeed, trouble really only occurswhen we allow ourselves to dwell in either the past or the future. True peace andacceptance can only be found in the calm acknowledgment of the reality of the presentmoment. I have said as much on so many occasions.The verse from Isaiah says pretty much the same thing, namely, that if we stay fixed andfocused, and fully grounded, in the reality of the Eternal Now---that is, if our minds are fullyand mindfully engaged in what is taking place in and around us now---we will know andenjoy ‘perfect peace,’ no matter what happens.Everything---and I mean everything---is contained within ‘the Now.’ All duration – or time –is total and complete in the Now. There is an ‘eternal’ quality about the Now. It is forevernew. The present moment has its unfolding in the Now. That is all we truly ‘possess,’ but itis more than sufficient.May the peace and power of the Now be yours---now and always.