Sunday, December 2, 2012

All About Time

I have some scenarios for you:  You come home late. You've put off making cookies for an event. You need 6 dozen home-made cookies in one hour. You're frantic and distressed. On top of that, you need to make supper for the family at the same time -- supper in 30 minutes, and the meat is still frozen! There's no time! And the faster you try to cook, the more mistakes you make.
Or this one -- you've gone on a walk in the woods, but it's getting dark. You need to get home before 7:00 and you just can't get there. You try to trot, but there are roots, brambles, branches. You stumble, and have to slow down. You're not going to get there in time.
And this one -- You have 7 minutes to get to your child's school, and you're late. Every light is red. The driver in front of you has chosen this moment to gaze at every house along the route. Argh!
Finally, the baby. You know how it goes -- the baby needs to go to sleep. You and your spouse plan to go out, and it would be so much better if the baby were tucked into her bed, snoozing happily. But she won't go to sleep. She screams, she whimpers. You use all your parental charms, try to repress your stress, pretend you're not in a hurry at all.  Can a 4 months old really detect such things? Please! Just go to sleep! you think frantically.
It's all about time. We hurry. Now, reconsider the above scenarios: how pleasant and comforting is a happy few hours of leisurely kitchen baking, when you're not in a hurry? How nice is a stroll in the woods, when you have the luxury of kicking leaves, gazing at the sunset, staring absently at bare branches? Or a true afternoon drive, just for pleasure? What if you didn't have to get anywhere? And the crying baby -- pain transforms to pleasure when the time crunch disappears. You remove your shoes, cuddle the baby and tell yourself, "There is no hurry. I'm not leaving. Cry away!"  And the baby goes to sleep in your arms.

It's the tyranny of time that stresses us out. Why are we in a hurry? Ask yourself this: What if you had forever?  What if your underlying stress, always, wasn't the alarming certainty that you only have a few decades left?

That's why heaven will be peaceful. It's the simple removal of the deadline.  You have forever -- eternity -- to do everything. And then do everything another hundred times. Take your time. When we're allowed to take our time, peace reigns.

Today is the first Sunday of Advent. During this month, as often as possible, tell yourself, "I'm not in a hurry." Advent is the anticipation of an eternal wonder.  Set yourself in an eternal mood. When you're late for dinner, haven't done the Christmas shopping, are tail-gating in a temper, and are taking it out on the kids, stop. It's Advent. Time is supposed to be standing still, as all else but the One Eternal Miracle is approaching on your wintry horizon. 

Peace on Earth. Goodwill to men!

(This post is part of  Floss's A Pause in Advent blog sharing event this month.)

10 comments:

  1. HI MK! GREAT post and so true and on my mind!
    I had to rush home from Fort Collins so I could make a pot of chili since my crock pot has been at Kelli's for months. I am sitting down right now though, even though Bill and I were moving furniture a minute ago. We aren't as agile as we once were!
    You mention the cookie exchange and I had to laugh. Kelli wanted me to go to her church's cookie exchange so when she asked me to come along a week ago, I said yes. It was so interesting. In my day, everyone made pretty Christmas cookies and put them on lovely plates. In Kelli's new day, they BUY cookies and take them out of the packages and put them on paper plates. So funny! Kelli said, "Well, you didn't have cell phones, so you had more time on your hands." Again, funny! I love that kitchen in the photo!

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  2. The poem on my blog is there because of you, M.K., and your resolve to NOT hurry. Thank you!

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  3. I too have been thinking about Time - this is a great post, thank you

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  4. Indeed, a post to ponder over. Time is a gift from God - and it is interesting how many of us are mentioning this in some way or another in our "Pause" posts. God bless.

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  5. This seems to be on many minds this season...pausing to take time to consider, then reconsider.

    I am so sorry for the loss of your young friend. So very sad, and a lovely poem you wrote for her.

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  6. You make a lot of sense of heaven, there - somtimes it seems very remote and hard to imagine, but you show us that it is full of something we wish we had more of! (And that's just the start, of course...) I've found over the past four years that I make a lot of my own time pressures. If I 're-frame' the situation, rather as you describe, I can enjoy what I'm doing right now, rather than worry about the next thing to do. Thanks so much for joining in a Pause in Advent. You're in my sidebar now (I've been having internet problems - sorry I didn't respond sooner.)

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  7. Eternity began the moment we said "yes" to Jesus.

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  8. What you say about time is just so true. And your friend's sudden death emphasises that we never know how much time we have to play with here on earth. It's so important to cherish the time we have been given as the gift it is. Thank you for the reminder - so needed in all the busyness of everything. E x

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  9. What you say about time is just so true. And your friend's sudden death emphasises that we never know how much time we have to play with here on earth. It's so important to cherish the time we have been given as the gift it is. Thank you for the reminder - so needed in all the busyness of everything. E x

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  10. Thanks, dear friends! It's so nice to have all of you visit here. Thanks, Floss and friends, for doing this Advent event.

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Hello! I hope you leave a word ~ I will get back to it as soon as I can!