“As for man, his days are like grass; he flourishes like a flower of the field; for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more.” Psalm 103:15-16
While cleaning the grill for burgers on the Fourth, the emails and messages I had received earlier ran through my mind. My brothers in Christ had worshipped with villagers in Tanzania for three hours. Who has three hours for worship? Lord, have mercy! When I served up in East Texas, if the service ran long on a Sunday the Cowboys played, at least three men would get up and leave. How often do we cut the last hymn to hurry up and get out on time? The church in which I was raised changed their worship schedule in my youth years for several reasons. But the congregation’s favorite excuse was that church let out early enough to beat the Baptists to the restaurants. True story…
Though I am working to improve, I do not manage time well. Witness cleaning the grill under the blazing sun in the middle of the afternoon less than three hours before guests were to arrive. But in the last several months, my usage of time has become increasingly important. There is much I am trying to complete or begin or maintain, rather unsuccessfully, though I’m getting better.
Time is a bit like a bank account. While we can add to our time with certain habits or lessen our time with others, some of the time we have is simply inherited in our genes, good or bad. Studies indicate our time-spending habits outside of work are largely invested in television. Sitting still and watching entertainment are hard for me. However, a friend mentioned how much she liked to play a particular game on her phone. The game has an iPad app, as well. I know because I can play that game for hours.
Time is precious. We do not know how much we have, but each day is a gift. The way in which we use our days is a reflection of our appreciation of the gift of life itself. The saddest thing to see is not early or unexpected death, tragic as that is. The saddest thing to see is a wasted life, one used selfishly, one that makes no mark of love, one that takes but never gives.
Spending time… If we guarded our hours as carefully as we monitor our other investments, I suspect we would have time for three hours of worship. More importantly, I know that, if we did, the investment in worship would pay off exponentially.
God bless –
Rev. Elizabeth Moreau