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Living in the Present

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah
The Truth Network Radio
January 9, 2023 9:00 am

Living in the Present

Clearview Today / Abidan Shah

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January 9, 2023 9:00 am

In this show, Dr. Shah talks about how we are called to live in the present. Living in the past causes shame and regret, and living in the future causes fear and anxiety. God has made us to glorify Him here and now.

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30 Days to a New Beginning:


Hello, everyone.

Today is Monday, January the 9th. I'm Ryan Hill. And I'm John Galantis. Wait a minute. What? I'm John Galantis.

We'll come to that later. And you're listening to Clearview Today with Dr. Abbadan Shah, the daily show that engages mind and heart with the gospel of Jesus Christ. You can find us online at, or if you have a question for Dr. Shah or a suggestion for a future episode, send us a text at 252-582-5028. You can also email us at contact at And you can also help us keep the show going, keep this conversation going by supporting this podcast, sharing it online, and leaving us a good review on iTunes.

And we're going to leave a link in the description so you can do that. Okay. We've got to come back to this because people who are listening are confused and people who are watching are definitely confused. You are not John Galantis. I am trying to be.

I'm trying my best to be. David is on the show today. David, hey buddy.

My name is David Williamson. I am here. We'll get to the reason why I'm here, but do you want to hit the verse of the day first?

Yeah, absolutely. So the verse of the day today comes from Hebrews 13, verse five. Let your conduct be without covetousness. Be content with such things as you have, for he himself has said, I will never leave you nor forsake you. That's such an encouragement. In times of joy, he's with us. In times of, you know, what seems to be like spiritual drought, he's still with us. There's that promise. I love that reminder too. Like the reason that we don't have to covet other things is because we have Jesus. I mean, ultimately that's the greatest thing that we could have, we could possess as a relationship with God. Yeah. I mean, there's no question about it. So that's pretty cool.

Yeah. So David, would you like to fill everyone in on why you are seated at the table today? That's exciting, by the way.

Like normally you're back there behind the board and I don't get to talk to you at the table. It definitely feels odd. Like it's not, it doesn't, it feels wrong.

I don't know, but it's not wrong. It's exciting. It's exciting. I'm here because our normal host that sits here, John Galantis, he had his second baby boy, Holden John Galantis, and what a cute baby that is. We've gone, he is very cute.

I visited them in the hospital and then we went as a staff and saw them yesterday, I think. Yeah. So he's going to be out for the week. So I'll take over this week and do the best that I can and try to fill his shoes.

We, what was your, what was your reaction when you met Holden in the hospital? Wow. This is a small, small thing. We were talking about that a little bit. Like we, there's a bunch of kids running around like a staff kids. Like I've got, I've got five, we've seen, you know, Dr. Shaw's boys kind of grow up. And you know, now we have John's older son, Gavin, and then of course little baby Holden. So you forget like when the kids are born, you forget just how small they are because they start to grow and your, your perspective changes.

But then when another baby comes, you're like, Oh gosh, wow, these really do start kind of tiny. And it's been very sweet to see like Holden and Gavin together. That's very, very sweet. Well, David, we're very excited that you're on the show this week, like seated at the table. We miss John of course, and we'll see him next week, but we're excited that you are, you're with us this week.

That's awesome. So, you know, it's, we're still in kind of the new year's mindset. Everybody's thinking about resolutions.

Hopefully your resolutions are going very well. We're typically in that, in that frame of time where people are still focused, still dedicated, still committed to their resolutions before we start to kind of trickle off a little bit. But as we're going through January, we want to encourage you guys to live for today. You know, that's something that we hear sometimes, but, uh, we often fall into this mindset of we're eager to look for the future. We're eager to plan ahead. We're eager to get things lined up in the future, or we look back to the past. That's something that, you know, sometimes has been a struggle for me is kind of looking back and think, could I have done this differently?

What, how would things have played out if I had said this or done that? But God wants us to live for today. We're going to talk some more about what that means, but if you have any questions or suggestions for new topics, send us a text at two five two five eight two five zero two eight, or visit us online at We're going to get Dr.

Shot and we'll be right back. Hey everyone, my name's Ellie and I'm David. We want to take a minute and let you know how we can actually serve you as you're listening to Clearview today. The Bible paints an extraordinary picture of who we are as a church body. The mission of Clearview Church is to lead all people into a life changing, ever-growing relationship with Jesus Christ. A huge part of leading people is praying for them. A big reason that Christians have unanswered prayers in their life is because they're not praying.

You know, first John five 15 says, and if we know that he hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of him. If you're listening to the Clearview Today show, we want to know how we can pray for you as well. There's a number of ways that you can get in touch with us at Clearview and share your prayer requests, but the best way is by texting us at two five two five eight two five zero two eight. You can also send us an email at prayer at Clearview BC dot O R G or you can download the Clearview app on iTunes or Google play.

You know, on that app, there's a dedicated prayer wall that helps us to get to know what's going on in your life, how we can pray for you and how we can take any necessary steps to get you moving in the right direction. Thanks for listening. Now let's get back to Dr. Shah's with us in the studio today. Dr. Shah, the table is different than it normally is.

It's different, I wonder why. It's a disturbance in the forest. It is a disturbance. And he's right there. I am a disturbance and a nuisance. No, you're not.

No, you're not. We appreciate you very much. Absolutely. He helps me tremendously.

It's just a couple hours ago, he helped us help Nick locate our dog. Oh no. Yeah, the thing is, she is like 14 years old. Anytime there is a thunder or lightning, she will run through the fence, which is an electric fence. She's like... She just powers through. She powers through it. She surges through it. I don't really care.

I gotta get out of here. So it's like, the rest of the time, 24 seven, almost, I would say 363 days of the year, she's fine. She'll stay in the fence, no problem. But then those days where there is a thunderstorm and she feels like she's safer on someone else's porch or under someone else's truck, other than our house, our porch, our garage. Or a random store up the block. Or a random store up the block.

She'll go find those people and then sit behind the counter like she owns the place. I'll just be here now. This is where I am. Yeah. And then we have to, and I'm good friends with the animal shelter people.

We work with them, helping animals in the community. So I'm on the board with the Crime Stoppers, with him. So I just kinda text him and say, hey chief, just to let you know, she's out again. He's like, no problem. I'll have my guys looking out.

That's pretty funny. We'll keep an eye out for her when she's out by. We'll keep looking. But Nick, behind the set, and David went and found her. So she's okay. She's normal. She's back. She's inside the house right now. I'm glad she's okay.

Well, I'm gonna take a stab at this and see if I can do it like John does it. So if you're joining us for the first time today, Dr. Shah is a PhD in New Testament textual criticism, a professor at Carolina University, author, full-time pastor, and the host of today's show. And might I add, my best friend.

No, I'm playing. He is my friend. But I just wanted to add that little extra flair.

Little flourish on that little extra flourish. Nice, and where can you follow Dr. Shah? Of course, the one thing on the run sheet I didn't read. You can follow him on his website at That's right. And a lot of the discussion today is gonna come from one of your recent messages, Dr. Shah, a New Year's message for us. So if you haven't checked out that message, you can find the manuscript over on his blog,

Or again, the full video of that message is on our church's website, But we wanna talk about today. You wanna spend today talking about today.

That's right. We wanna talk about today, today. That was a fun wordplay, I had to engage in there. But when we talk about today, there's a sense of immediacy, there's a sense of what's going on right now. But a lot of times, we're either looking backwards at what has happened, or we're looking ahead to what hasn't happened yet. And we miss what's going on right now.

We miss what's going on today, which I appreciated so much, your take on that in your recent message. You know, looking back, people look back, and that's fine to do as long as you're reflecting back, not dwelling on your past. You know, there's so many things in the Bible about looking back and being grateful to the Lord for what he's done for you, looking back and seeing how he worked all things together for good in your life. But if you dwell there, if you stay there, as if you can fix the past, or as if you can go back and correct your mistakes, or whatever people are accusing you of, or saying, you know, you were not good enough back here, or you messed up back here, and you spend the rest of your life, or most of your life, trying to travel back in time, and it's hopeless, it's worthless, it's not what God wants from you. And unfortunately, the world, family, friends, even your own self, and especially the enemy, will want you to go live in the past. And before we even dive into the subject, just remember, Jesus said, I'm not the God of the dead.

God is not the God of the dead, he's the God of the living. So don't go back where the dead are. Neither should we try to live in the future. Now we can plan for the future, it's okay to do that. We can have a vision for the future, I think it's very important, very essential to have a vision for the future. But you can live in the future.

Now that may seem like such a simple thing. What do you mean, live in the future? You can't live in the future. Yet many of us are trying to live in the future. How?

By wearing and carrying the worries, and the anxieties, and the stresses of tomorrow. How are we going to? What is going to happen? What if? And then there's another what if, which is the past, which is what if we had done differently? What if this hadn't happened? What if I could go back and change this and change that?

Neither of those what ifs work. So when it comes to the past, thank God for it. When it comes to the future, trust Him with it. But live with Him, for Him, through Him, in today.

That's so good. I feel like for me personally, the struggle is often looking ahead to the future. I definitely think about the past. I definitely think about things that have happened. Just kind of evaluate, could I have done or said something differently? But most of I feel like where I get hung up is the future.

What if this happens, or what am I gonna do if so and so does this or doesn't do this? That's where I get, I feel like, mired a lot of the time. I feel like I'm the complete opposite of that. Most of the time, I do worry about things sometimes and all that, but normally all of my look, when I'm not doing the right thing, which is focusing on today, I'm normally looking at the past like, okay, there's nothing I can do about the future.

It's gonna come and I'm gonna deal with it as it comes. But the past is like, I could have done that differently. I could have said that differently.

That could have been handled differently. And that's where I'm more hung up than anything. Because I feel like for me at least, I can't do anything for the future other than make plans and then hope for the best. And it's also age-based, the younger you are, you'll deal with more of the past. Older you are, the more you tend to focus on the future. Or at least, I guess, I think that's how it is and that could be.

But it is biblical. This is not just something taken out of pop psychology or be positive, guys, be optimistic. Because Jesus himself said in Matthew 634, he said, therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

Sufficient for the day means today has enough problems to occupy you. Don't worry about tomorrow. That's interesting that Jesus, I mean, there's no promise like, you're gonna get to a worry-free day.

You're gonna get to where everything is just calm seas and clear skies and you're not gonna have any worries that day. He says, hey, today's got enough trouble of its own. And I think a lot of times we miss that. We miss the acknowledgement from Jesus that you're gonna have struggles, you're gonna have problems.

In this life, you will have tribulation. Exactly. I feel like we miss that a lot of times. And the only thing you and I can do is deal with the ones that are in front of you now and just do that. It's okay to reflect on the past. So to our listeners, to our viewers, to you guys, reflect on the past.

Think about the past. How has the past been for you? 2023, how was that year for you? Was it a difficult year? Was it a year of sickness? And I'm not just talking about pandemic sickness, just regular sickness.

I don't know if people in our church family who had to go to the hospital. I mean, things went from zero to crazy. And they ended up being in the hospital, running tests and this and that, can't figure out what's wrong with them. And it was a rough, rough year for some people. Some people, when they look back at 2023, 2022, I'm talking about, they had some very difficult losses. Losses of life. Loved ones they thought would always be there are gone.

I saw a post on Facebook talking about a parent or a friend, how they're gonna miss that person in their life, they're gone. So it was a year of loss for them. Loss of a job. They really thought, man, I'll have this job forever.

And this is good, as good as it gets. And then job was gone. A loss of income. A lot of families are struggling with that with all this inflation coming.

And already here, they're struggling with income. Some of you may have dealt with loss of relationship. There's so many struggles people have.

And so dealing with that as well, you ended up having to face situations that you would not have in a million years imagined, but you had to face them. How do we, I feel like the temptation is to look, like you said, either backwards or forwards. We have a hard time focusing on today. What are some, if people acknowledge that struggle, maybe they're listening, maybe they're watching, and say, you know, I'm naturally geared toward looking back and getting stuck in regret or shame or things like that. Or I'm naturally geared to look forward and get stuck in worry and anxiety about what might, may or may not happen.

How can we practically train ourselves to focus on today? Well, one place we have to begin is that passage. Matthew 634 is part of Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, okay?

Sermon on the Mount goes from Matthew 5 through Matthew 7. And I've been on the Mount of Beatitudes. It's just a beautiful site. Some of you have gone with me.

Actually, Nick has and David has. It's just a beautiful site. You know what I mean? You go up there, usually it's a nice sunny day. And up on top is the Church of the Beatitudes, which was built back in the 1930s. Actually, the Italian fascist Mussolini helped out. They built him that church. But it's sitting on the side of a fourth century Byzantine church, chapel. And the history or tradition has it that people have been coming to that site for the past, you know, 2,300, I'm sorry, 1,700 years. Because this was very early on considered to be the place where Jesus gave the Sermon on the Mount.

Wow. You know, so often when I go there, I'll kind of stand there and just kind of picture, you know, the Sea of Galilee is in front of me. And this is sitting on the northwestern shores of the Sea of Galilee, this Mount of Beatitudes. To the northeast is Capernaum.

To the southwest is Thubga, the place of the multiplication of bread and fish. So it's just has so much meaning and so much depth in that place. But I just kind of stand there and I visualize this multitude that is there with Jesus. And they're not just all bandaged up people either. Because when we think of multitudes following Jesus, we only think of them as physically sick. But if you look at some of the Greek words for sickness, what you find is that they were not just physically sick. The word nosos is, of course, chronic disease. Malachia, crippling disease that weakens.

Kakos is actually sickness coming from an evil source. So some of the people in that multitude were people who were struggling physically because of internal problems, spiritual problems, mental, emotional problems. Then there's the word basanos, torments. I mean, this is an area that probably had ex-military people from the Roman military, Roman army. And so they were probably struggling with PTSD.

Okay? Then, of course, the word dimonizomai, which is demon-possessed, right? So there were those kind of people there.

There's the word selenizomai, selenizomai, which actually means lunatic, moonstruck. So there were people who had lost touch with their minds because of some trauma. Maybe some accident, maybe some relationship breakdown, maybe some tragedy.

And there's a disconnect now, there's a short. It's interesting that you bring that up because a lot of times we do think about Jesus healing the physical infirmities, the things that were wrong with people. And he did, of course he did. But we don't think about, I mean, mental illness seems like an invention of our current times. It seems like normally when you think of the Bible, it's like, okay, yeah, that makes sense. He did all this and all this, but does it really touch on mental illness? Does it really touch on- Does it really apply today? I mean, how, okay, Jesus can heal a paralytic, but can he really help me with this disorder in my head?

And it's like- Right, this struggle in my life, this stress, this anxiety. And the answer is yes, because the Sermon on the Mount was not given just to a bunch of sick people who had walked out of the hospital. This was given to people just like us who were struggling with their past. So pay attention to the Beatitudes, okay?

Because this is very powerful. Matthew 5, 2, then he opened his mouth and taught them saying. So he didn't just walk around healing people, heal, heal, heal, heal. He actually spent time teaching them.

Why? Because teaching them was freeing them, was lifting them up, was giving them hope. And what was he teaching them? Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. So there may be a family sitting there that's feeling very poor in spirit. And Jesus says, you know, the whole kingdom of heaven belongs to you. Blessed are those who mourn.

There's a family that has just lost their dad, or their son, or their friend, or their sibling, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Are you meek? He said, oh, I'm a humble kind of guy. No, no, what I mean is meek in the sense of have you been humbled, right? Have you been humbled? You know, this past year, maybe it may have been a humbling year for you. And so what's the word for you? For you shall inherit the earth. So if you really pay attention to the Beatitudes, he didn't just heal physically sick people.

He was also helping people who are struggling in their lives. And then of course, 2022 has been a year of, I would say, moral degradation, you know, especially the last part. We have completely trashed God's commandment.

We have destroyed the idea of family. Now, sin is not just something that is happening in our world. We're cultivating sin, especially regards to sex, and gender, and identity. I mean, it's so tragic what's happening. But if your heart is broken for that, blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sakes for theirs is a kingdom of heaven, okay? And then earlier, blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled. So that's a word of comfort to those who are going, man, I don't know what's happening to America.

What's happening to our world? Well, you will be comforted. So don't just dwell on your past. My encouragement to you is to reflect on your past and then to see it from God's perspective, okay?

And leave it there. So my encouragement to our listeners is, don't live in the past, don't dwell on the past. Reflect on it, read these beatitudes, and they'll give you comfort, and then start living today. Now, the other thing that we talked about in the opening was the tomorrow, because that's just as bad when you spend time, you know, just obsessed over what's coming tomorrow. Looking ahead and raising your hands, like what if this happens? What if this doesn't happen?

I don't know how this is gonna turn out. Yeah, yeah, and what did Jesus say? Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, but tomorrow will worry about its own things. So again, people who were sitting in the crowd were worried about where their food is gonna come from, where their clothing is gonna come from, where, you know, how is it gonna all work out?

And what did Jesus say to them in Matthew 6.25? Therefore, I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat, what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?

I mean, how powerful is that? So I hope our listeners are getting this, because we tend to think Jesus only spoke to the physically sick people. No, he was talking to the people who were burdened with anxiety and worry about the future.

And he said, don't worry about that. Is not your life more than just food and clothing? Look at the birds of the air. They neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. So if God's gonna feed those birds, are you not of more value than they?

And then he said something kind of funny. He said, Jesus said this, he said, which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? Can you get taller by worrying?

No. Okay then, then stop worrying. And then, why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow, they neither toil nor spin, means they don't sit there and tailor their clothes, their petals, and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Means he did not wear such fine robes as those lilies are wearing. So, if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, or you of little faith? So, don't waste your time over worrying about tomorrow, because all it will do is bring fear and anxiety.

Okay? After all these things the Gentiles seek, for your heavenly father knows that you need all these things, but seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Isn't that awesome?

That's amazing. And what a great note to begin the year on. Don't be stuck looking backward, don't get stuck looking forward, but focus on today, focus on glorifying God today. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. And in that Sermon on the Mount, Jesus even emphasized that in the Lord's Prayer, which is really the disciples prayer, right? But in Matthew 6, 9, in this manner therefore pray, our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, means today. I cannot glorify God six years ago, six days ago, six minutes ago. I cannot glorify God tomorrow. I can only glorify him today.

Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. Right, like today's bread. This day, our daily bread.

Not yesterday. Not tomorrow's bread. Not tomorrow's bread. Don't be like the children of Israel, you know, who were going out there gathering more manna than they were supposed to, and then the bread stank.

You know, don't be like those, how did I say it? Piggly Wiggly. Piggly Wiggly. Piggly Wiggly Tives. Piggly Wiggly Tives, who go and clear out the entire shelf. Take away all the toilet paper, right? Put it in there with your book of coupons.

Extreme couponers. Take all of this, all of the stock. Don't do that. I mean, of course, plan ahead.

Nobody is against that. God is not saying, you should not worry about tomorrow's meal, so don't even plan. You know, go each day to the grocery store and buy.

No, no, no, you can, but don't stress over it. And so, our challenge is to our listeners, please, live in today. It's so freeing. Obey God today. Please God today. Trust God today. Yesterday is over. Tomorrow is yet to come. You and I can only live now. God is beyond time.

We're not. Live in the moment. And Christ is sufficient for everything you need today.

I love that so much. That's such a great encouragement. If you guys enjoyed today's topic, or you have suggestions for future topics, let us know by sending us a text to 252-582-5028. You can also visit us online at, and like we reminded you, you can support us financially on that same website.

Every contribution goes not only to building up this radio show, but countless other ministries for the gospel of Jesus. David, we had a listener submit a question. You wanna deliver the question?

The question for? Special delivery. Sure, yeah, special delivery.

FedEx, overnighting. Right to you, Dr. Shah. What languages do you speak or read?

Oh my goodness. Of course, I speak English best I can. I also speak, read, write, Hindi, language in India, the national language. Also read, speak, write, Marathi.

Speaking is a little troublesome now, because I haven't spoken as much as I used to. I can speak Urdu. I can understand Urdu more than I can speak. Then, of course, Greek and Hebrew. I have good knowledge of Biblical Greek, Biblical Hebrew. And I can, of course, read it. I can write it.

And then, of course, I have theological German and Latin somewhere in my back pocket with a lexicon and dictionary. Whew, that's pretty cool. Man, I do good to get English on a good day.

Yeah, I barely get that. Man, that's awesome. We love you guys. We'll see you tomorrow and clear you today.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-09 10:12:05 / 2023-01-09 10:25:08 / 13

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