I haven’t always thought of time as my friend. People throughout history have called it a speeding train, a monster, a slave-driver, and a crocodile. The fact is, it has been a patient, albeit unbending, teacher even when I fought it for all I thought it should do for me. Through it all, what a kind companion it’s been.
Anyone who has known me for very long has heard me claim to have a certain degree of “Peter Pan syndrome” because I love the magic and energy that accompanies the perspective of a child. I’ve even posted blogs titled Why do we have to grow up? The real issue at work in this idea is innocence, not time. I’ve seen 15-year-olds with the bodies, minds, and experiences of 30-year-olds and 50-year-olds with the open expression and reckless love of a child. Our minds and hearts create the structure of the reality in which we live, not time. It begins with who we choose to be at our core of our being. Do we value innocence enough to protect it in ourselves and others?
I’ve told many friends, “My time does not belong to me.” It’s a thought that seems backwards to people in an era of “it’s all about me” and “my truth”… but it’s Biblical! “You are not your own; you were bought with a price!” (I Corinthians 6) That is to say, nothing I am or have is actually mine except my choice. And I have chosen: “to live is Christ and to die is gain”… therefore, time is on my side whether I live or die, stay young forever or grow to be 80 years old. God’s kids don’t lose because we have everything to gain if we give it all. And that’s just what we, as givers, do. It’s the only way to live!
“Time cools, time clarifies, no mood can go unaltered through the course of hours,” according to Mark Twain. Josh Turner’s song “Time is Love” is another reflection of the true value and the commitment it represents. Time is actually a friend of mine… with warm, amazing hands that hold my icy cold ones with steadiness and care. These hands have encouraged me over and over. They’ve helped me grow, heal, resolve conflicts, and create masterpieces. Their constancy has taught me to be measured; their consistent movement helps me maintain discipline while also keeping me from boredom; and their true value is as priceless as the life they sustain. What’s more, they serve (without fail) the God I love and trust, the only man who can handle and channel everything I am and have to offer without compromising the freedom and innocence I cherish.
Who wants to fight an ally or waste a priceless gift? Once again, I’m struck by the loving, uncomplicated way time has resolved an important riddle and brought me to a place of so much peace and release. What a refreshing way to begin a new year. I can’t help but be awed by the power, the patience, and the ever-presence of Jesus Christ and His gentleness and steadiness exemplified in the hands of time.
Yes, he is gentle and kind and very very patient as some of us have wasted some of our time here. Only he can redeem it. And he does it in such a wonderful way. He always wants what is best for us. I am now glad when I see innocence in someone because some of mine was shattered and I was envious of others whose lives seemed easy. And just maybe this is how we were meant to be. Purely innocent made in God’s image.