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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

The Eternal in May

      As is typical in Speedway, the month of May is my busiest month.  There are family birthdays and anniversaries.  We have three sets of honor’s banquets, band concerts, talent shows, volunteer efforts, track meets, 4-H workshops, church duties, and extra rental business--all taking place in May.  On top of this, my doctoral program requires that papers be written this month.  These papers linger, still unwritten, as I write this.
       Feel my tension?  
       It arises because of my poor relationship to time. 
       The writer, Jim Forest, tells about a time experiment done at an American Theological School. A number of students were asked to prepare a sermon on the story of the Good Samaritan. The study divided preaching students into three groups.  Some were told they could arrive to tape their sermons any time of day; others were required to appear within a few hours; and the rest were told to come without delay.
        The experimenters also slyly arranged for each student to encounter a man lying on the ground by a bench near the entrance of where the sermons would be delivered. 
      The results?  Only one third of the preaching students took the time to stop and do anything for the person lying on the ground.  But those who did stop were mainly the ones who had been told they could come any time.  They felt they had time.  And the sense of having time freed them to be neighborly.
      Deep within we worry that our supply of time is evaporating, and so we get in a hurry.  Then, we get mad when people and circumstances do not bow to our schedule.

      The only cure for this anxious sense of losing time, is to experience participating in the eternal.  Following Jesus is described as “waiting” on the coming Son. (1 Thessalonians 1:10)  It is only when we take the time to prayerfully wait with those who image his presence that we discover the truth that we have all eternity to accomplish and enjoy great things.  Tension subsides when we deeply know that this schedule will not be interrupted.