The book I’ve been reading for the last few weeks is “One Thousand Gifts” by Ann Voskamp. What a beautiful book, what a beautiful language! Here is someone who uses such a beautiful English! Personally I find it like poetry. It’s very soothing to me.
She writes about being thankful. And to do so, Ann had started a list of things that she’s thankful for. Her goal was to write down a list of 1000 things that she’s thankful for.
In her chapter 4 “A Sactuary of Time” she talks about us not having time, always rushing, always running.
And going into the Advent and Christmas season that seems especially the case. I see my calendar filling up with events, with family gatherings, with concerts to attend and Christmas parties to go to. And they are all good in itself. But it’s the combination of all of it that makes me weary before I even enter this season. I don’t want to miss this and do want to be there, and I end up, once again, running, rushing… And I’m not even talking about baking, shopping, decorating!
Here are some quotes from chapter 4:
“The hurry makes us hurt.
And maybe it is the hurt that drives us ? For all our frenzied running seemingly toward something, could it be that we are in fact fleeing – desperate to escape pain that pursues?
Whatever the pace, time will keep it and there’s no outrunning it, only speeding it up and pounding the feet snag on time and leak empty. The longer I keep running, the longer the gash, and I drain, bleed away.
Hurry always empties a soul.”
I can so relate to these words. How many times have I not paid attention to what my kid is telling me? And they’ve called me on it. And still I would say, “No, honey, I’m listening.” But was I really? There are too many times, when so many things are going on at the same time. There’s the news on TV, my daughter is telling me about school, and I look through a pile of mail. Where is my attention really?
“Time is a relentless river. It rages on, a respecter of no one. And this, this is the only way to slow time: When I fully enter time’s swift current, enter into the current moment with the weight of all my attention, I slow the torrent with the weight of me all here. I can slow the torrent by being all here. I only live the full life when I live fully in the moment.”
Whoever invented and marketed multi-tasking?
Why are we so proud about multi-tasking?
Why does it have to be on every resume, on every job ad? I’m on the phone, talking to someone, but at the same time, I’m reading an email and checking the calendar for some info. Who has my attention?
Just writing these things down makes me dizzy.
And what about God? Do I multi-task as well when it comes to God? I read this, I write that and in between I send a groaning of a prayer, and on I go to the next best thing…
Do I take time to sit still? To listen? To ponder and actually think? Lately I found myself even not finishing a song that I’m listening to. I call that selfmade ADD.
Here is another beautiful quote:
“The clock ticks slow. I hear it for what it is: good and holy. Time, what God first deemed holy above all else (Genesis 2:3). Thank God for the time, and very God enters that time, presence hallowing it. True, this, full attention slows time and I live the full of the moment, right to outer edges. But there’s more. I awake to I AM here. When I’m present, I meet I AM, the very presence of a present God. In His embrace, time loses all sense of speed and stress and space and stands so still and … holy.”
Time. What precious gift we’ve been given. How do I honor God with my time?