Lately I have had a lot more of this on my hands. Whether it is the morning hours before I work or the evenings in which I find quietness, I've thought a lot about time and how it affects our lives and the things in which time brings, takes, challenges, changes, and gives perspective to.
Seriously, what has time "brought" you? Time has brought ups and downs- answers for career purposes, my dreams/goals, greater hearing loss, understanding of people, new spiritual challenges, amazing friendships, you get the idea...none of these come quickly. They are the product of time.
Where has time "brought" you from? In a literal sense, time brought me from Wisconsin as I labored for quite a while as to where to attend college. Time has brought me from seasons of struggling with doubt, physical injuries, and so many other things.
I guess what I'm trying to say is over time challenges and blessings come.
In some ways I began to dislike time. With many friends out of town, my family much busier than they have been in a long time, my favorite co-workers out for the summer, and my personal busyness of the summer winding down I seemed to foster a bitter dislike for time. As an introvert, time to recharge is of utmost importance. I seldom do well without it. Without that time comes headaches, stomachaches, foggy thinking, and exhaustion. I've made myself sick on occasion for not taking this time. Lately it seems as though too much of this can bring the same symptoms! However, with time again comes peace and understanding. It's as if time takes peace and brings healing all in one. So there must be something more to it.
Time is likely one of our greatest teachers. Seasons of this or that teach kindness, gentleness, goodness, self control, or that which underlies them all-patience. Right now, the calm before the storm of school is alerting to discipline: using time wisely-
- getting up and running even though I technically could sleep in and do it later
- diverting my focus while running to have some tough but needed conversations with God
- working on the season plan for my swimmers when there are still a few weeks remaining
- going to bed earlier when there is time to sit and watch movies or read and NOT taking the nap that is always so tempting
- intentionally setting aside time for friends and talking to family
- studying for the GRE and beginning the grad school application process
- journaling again so that I can look back and see how things have evolved and changed over time.... etc etc
Jim Elliot journaled about the complications that come with not using time wisely. This is a section that has stood out to me. "Be on guard, my soul, of complicating your environment so that you have neither time nor room for growth!”
There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven...
He has made everything appropriate in its time. He has also set eternity in their heart, yet so that man will not find out the work which God has done from the beginning even to the end.
(from Ecclesiastes 3)