I have been reminded of what Carpe Diem really means.
Carpe diem quam minime credula prostero. Seize the day, trusting as little in the future as possible.
It doesn’t say seize the week, or the month, or the year, but the day. Simply the day. I might seize the minute, the second, the hour. But I cannot seize more than the day.
And how faithful of a friend has the future been?
It is not enough (or it is too much) to say: “Come what may, I will do such and such a thing.” It is a direct defiance against the natural order of things. Defiance of the natural order of things elevates a person to a level above the natural order, e.g., the level of one who controls the order.
But we cannot do that, can we? We are not powerful enough, are we? For whatever happens, happens, whether we wanted it to or not, and we have no ultimate control.
As we cannot see the future, it is useless to say: “Tomorrow I will do such and such a thing.” It is completely futile to even plan out your life. So much effort is put into planning, that we forget to seize the day, and live.
But turning that around, we forget to seize the day and accomplish things. I always think: “I have done this much reading. I will do this much tomorrow.” And I determine what it is I will do the next day. But the day is like Pandora’s box, and I am the curious opener. Except that sometimes the things inside are not so dreadful, and sometimes they are. Sometimes they contain the things I want to do, and sometimes they don’t.
The future is like a friend that turns around and stabs you in the back when you trust it the most.
So trust in God, for he orders all things aright, and the balance of the earth sways on the tips of his fingers. In him your trust is never ill-founded: for even if things do not go aright for you, they are for your ultimate good. (Rom. 8:28). And even if you are suffering, do not shake your fist at the heavens, because this too is at the root of your sanctification, and because the Lord allows you to suffer does not mean his love is absent from you. (Lam. 3:31-33)
Seize the day!