The silly thing was that I did know it was coming. I mean, it wasn’t just something that arrived unannounced or unexpected, jumping out of the woodwork to take us all by surprise.
Even so, when I staggered out of bed on Friday, the realisation that it was finally here, didn’t even cross my mind.
For some reason, none of us had experienced that usual mounting sense of anticipation this time around. So perhaps that’s why I didn’t give it a second thought (let alone a first) until I was standing under the shower, preparing to face the day.
“Hey!” The light bulb of illumination finally burst within my consciousness. “It’s the last day of school!”
It would be impossible to describe the bliss I felt right then knowing that it would be two whole weeks before I again needed to respond to the 5.45 am wake up call of my alarm clock. Like I said, I did know it was coming, but for some reason it just seemed to come a whole lot faster than I’d been prepared for.
Now it would be very easy to ascribe my delayed reaction to the fact that I was really very tired that morning. The proof of that was demonstrated only half an hour later when I almost poured Tiger’s dog biscuits into the washing machine instead of his bowl. However, it had to be more than just weariness because Kylie and Matthew also seemed to be almost caught by surprise by the sudden arrival of the end of term.
In Kylie’s case it was probably because she’d been swamped with exams and assignments in the preceding fortnight, leaving her little time to even think about anything beyond the next subject to be studied.
With Matt, it just didn’t seem to have sunk in at all. Again, he knew it was coming, but when the last day finally arrived, he almost seemed to have to pinch himself to believe that the first term school holidays had swung around so quickly. That sense of unreality was still with him the next morning, when he couldn’t help asking, “It is the holidays isn’t it?”
I can honestly say that we have never asked the question, “Where has the time gone?” with a greater sense of wanting to truly know the answer!
More than a quarter of the year gone in what feels like little more than a blink of the eye! The year that started, as all years do, with so much potential and so much anticipation, has managed to cram more than its fair share of events within just three and a half short months. Uncertainty, war, sickness and upheaval on a world scale have filled our every waking moment, leaving many people overwhelmed with a feeling breathlessness. Yet, the apparent speed of every passing day can’t be totally blamed on dramatic world events.
We all know that time doesn’t have the ability to change its rate of passing. No matter what’s happening in life, there are always 24 hours in every day, and the clock still counts the seconds at exactly the same rate. So why does it appear to so many of us as if time is accelerating more and more with every passing year?
Basically, I believe it all comes down to our perception and practice.
When we overload our days with activity we can end up feeling as though we’re racing from week to week, in hot (if slightly exhausted) pursuit of those elusive and soon departed hours.
Our perception is that the time is going faster, when in fact it’s actually the way we practice our daily lives.
There’s not much we can do about changing world events, but there is a lot we can do to change the way we fill our days. God’s perfect design for mankind was that there would be a time for work, a time for recreation and a time for rest. In other words, perfect balance for perfect health.
Unfortunately, living in this fast paced world, where everything is expected to be instantaneous, we often become unbalanced. We also often have unrealistic expectations of what we can accomplish within a certain period of time, and so push ourselves way beyond our limits.
I must admit that I did have a little smile when I read the words of the Psalmist who wrote:
Oh, if only we were all as “wise” as the sun!
This marvellous Psalm speaks of the wonder of God’s creation, and the perfect order and unfolding of all things according to His plan.
So perhaps if you’re feeling a little out of order, and as though you’re being swept along in a whirlwind of passing time, it might be good to just slow down and take a realistic look at what you’re trying to accomplish each day.
For some of us, that may mean taking time to re-evaluate priorities and to re-consider some of the non-essential activities that we’ve become involved in. In other words, what things are truly providing healthy recreation, and what are just stealing time and energy?
It may also be appropriate to take a good look at the “work” we’re involved in for the Lord, and let Him show us which areas, if any, are good works, but not things that He’s called us to do.
However, of greatest importance is the need for all of us to stop at some point each day and just be still before God – no matter how busy our schedule! When we do make that time, He will always renew our strength and send us out refreshed and soaring on wings like eagles, instead of clutching helplessly at those ever racing wings of time.
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