I want to give a shout-out to Gretchen Rubin and The Happiness Project (You can access her blog and website at www.happiness-project.com/.  I receive a quotation about being happy every morning from The Happiness Project and one of these quotes very much resonated with choice theory. It went like this –

“There is almost one time that is important – Now! It is the most important time because it is the only time we have any power.”    Leo Tolstoy

Reality therapy is based on the belief that all problems are present problems. Something in our past may have influenced our behavior, but we can only deal with what’s happening in our lives right now. Choice theory states that the only person we can control is ourselves. Similarly, that control is always in the present, in the now, as Tolstoy would say it. William Glasser understood as well as anyone the importance of living in the present. The past is past, gone, nothing we can do to change it, and the future isn’t here yet, but we can affect the now, the present.

Glasser didn’t formulate reality therapy or choice theory from a spiritual perspective. He believed such views made sense and would best contribute to mental health, but his views weren’t based on scripture. At least he wasn’t aware of a scriptural tie-in. As it turned out, though, living life in the present is very scriptural. In the Sermon on the Mount, after explaining that His Father will give us everything we need, Jesus further assured us with, “So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.” Matthew 6:34

Commenting on Matthew 6:34, a little book called Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing encourages us to embrace the principle of today. Let these words sink into your heart, soak in them, be at peace.

   When we take into our hands the management of things with which we have to do, and depend upon our own wisdom for success, we are taking a burden which God has not given us, and are trying to bear it without His aid. We are taking upon ourselves the responsibility that belongs to God, and thus are really putting ourselves in His place. We may well have anxiety and anticipate danger and loss, for it is certain to befall us. But when we really believe that God loves us and means to do us good we shall cease to worry about the future. We shall trust God as a child trusts a loving parent. Then our troubles and torments will disappear, for our will is swallowed up in the will of God.

   Christ has given us no promise of help in bearing today the burdens of tomorrow. He has said, “My grace is sufficient for thee” (2 Corinthians 12:9); but, like the manna given in the wilderness, His grace is bestowed daily, for the day’s need. Like the hosts of Israel in their pilgrim life, we may find morning by morning the bread of heaven for the day’s supply.

   One day alone is ours, and during this day we are to live for God. For this one day we are to place in the hand of Christ, in solemn service, all our purposes and plans, casting all our care upon Him, for He careth for us. “I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” “In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength.” Jeremiah 29:11; Isaiah 30:15.         Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, p. 100, 101

One day alone is ours – today!

Remember to let colleagues and friends know about The Better Plan blog. The goal of the blog is to support people as they think about and implement choice theory principles. Encourage them to enter their email address and click on the Follow link.