Thursday, April 5, 2012
Slow Down, You Move Too Fast
Slow down, you move too fast, you got to make the morning last now… I found myself singing these Simon and Garfunkel lyrics yesterday morning as I was readying myself for what I knew was to be a very active and demanding day. I’m not sure it helped me slow down and savor, but it did put a little “groovy” into my step.
Time. That’s been my word for this season of Lent. Not so much in the sense of 1:00 or 4:00, but in the substance of “now.” The present moment. Therefore, these 40 days haven’t been so much about giving something up as in adding something new: the awareness of time.
So there are several things I’ve done to promote this cognizance.
For one, I have this metal calendar that hangs on my bathroom wall right next to my lavatory. Each morning before I do anything else, I move the magnetic bars to the new day, and I quote Psalm 90:12 – O Lord, teach me to number my days that I might gain a heart of wisdom. “Teach me to number THIS day.” No doubt, this has proven to be a healthy addition to my routine. A spiritual vitamin that nourishes my soul and reminds me this day is important and that I am to live in the moment of it.
Secondly, I’ve wound the old clock that sits on my mantel. This particular treasure was a gift to my great-grandfather by his parents – my great-great grandparents. It was sitting on the mantel of his new home when he returned from his honeymoon with his first wife back in the 1800’s. As old clocks often do, this one has a loud steady tick-tock and a “chime” that could wake the neighbors. Very often it rests quietly, but lately, I’ve wound it and allowed the metronome to become a soothing reminder of “time” to me.
Why all of this sudden interest in time for me? I don’t know. Maybe it’s because even if I live to the ripe old age of my great-grandmother, 105, I’ve already hit that halfway mark. Or maybe because I realize just how fast time is moving. It struck me last week that I have now lived in this particular location for 13 years. And what at one time took eons between kindergarten and high school graduation to accomplish has just gone by in a blink. The words of Andrew Marvell ring true. “But at my back I always hear time’s winged chariot hurrying near.”
But I think the biggest thing with me right now and what the Lord is revealing to me through all of this is that I was living so in the past and looking so toward the future, pining for was is not, that I was completely missing what God was doing with me right now in this present time and season. And that’s a sad estate in which to live, because we do not find God in time past or time future: only in the present moment. Yes, He was, is, and always will be, but THIS is where He is working and living and having His being in me. THIS “time” is the sacred moment. Why would I want to miss it? Why would I long for anything else?
The old clock just “bonged” 10. There’s much day yet to be lived. But for now, I’m grateful for having spent this time with you. It has proven to be sanctuary for me.
Just an ordinary moment…