Monday, January 26, 2009

Time


Time is a strange thing. To look at it on a calender, or one of those old fashioned round clocks, it appears very neat and tidy. Each hour, each day, each week, all the same size. Even months only differ by a day or so. It should march along in orderly progression, and looking back on any last two hours or last two months should be, by rights, about the same. But we all know if we are paying any attention to our lives at all that this simply isn't so. An afternoon of fun with someone whose company we enjoy flies by, while thirty minutes in the dentist's chair is an eternity.

Time does not move at the same pace, nor is is remembered so. It contracts and expands both in its reality and in its recall. The whole of the last year has been like this for me. It has had sort of an accordion feel. As I'm thinking ahead to the BE2, I'm remembering the BE1. What a rush that was! I had not planned to go. But then in the bleak midwinter, as my life began to do what in that time felt like a fast fall out from under me, something, some Wisdom I actually had the sense to listen to, told me I really needed some help here....and perhaps something radical was called for. So e-mails were sent and arrangements were made....and in what seemed like no time at all there I was on that aft deck saying out loud things that felt unspeakable and finding myself heard into being and new life. Those few days of course passed all too quickly, and the return from that liminal space was bumpy and the landing none too soft. The time that followed seemed to pass very slowly as I struggled to make sense of things in the new normal of my life. And yet as I look back on the Spring and Summer of this past year....it is only because I have it in record that I can recall as much of it as I do. It is blurry, like something that speeds by the window on the fast train to the next place. Because clearly....I was on my way to that next place, whether I knew it or not, whether I believed or not.

And these last two months....time is playing it's tricks again. In this new love...time stretches and compresses. It speeds and drags. It moves in one pace in real time and another one completely in memory. How can it be that in July I was caught between fear and hope and in January we are here? How can it be that in November we were there and now we are here? We are as if brand new with each other with the wonder of it all and we are as if old and forever with the comfort and safety of our love for one another. How can this all happen in this short time?

Go slow with love, people say. Oh, yes, I know. My heart knows and my head knows and my good therapist advice giving self knows. But in which time universe is this? In the one of calendars and clocks? Or the one of the heart? In the one that knows somehow that there is something here that is old and wise, that even in it's quickness, there is something deep and slow. In the one that knows too that there is something sacred here. That this is not a random thing, but one of grace and gift and blessedness. Because in the earthtime we spend, there is also timelessness..a connection to God and the utter eternal....the sense that in the only-now that is God time we are living God's dream that is and has always been coming to be for each of us...separately and together. We talked a bit this weekend about that coming across time to each other. How in some ways we wished we had found each other sooner. But at the same time, we know that now is the right time for us to be together. That each of needed all of what came before in our lives to be who we are now in this time. That had we found each other in an earlier time we might not have seen the same things in each other, appreciated each other, been ready for the kind of love we now find together....a love that makes space for each of our separate lives, that celebrates our uniqueness, that allows for all the time that has been and time that is yet to come but focuses most gently but insistently on the time that is now.

4 comments:

mompriest said...

love deepens and ripens with time...but it still has its own rhythm and rhyme....fast and slow, here and there, now and then, back and forth,....there is no "right" way for love to grow and be...

what a wonderful time for you....such a blessing.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I love all that I read about this relationship of yours. God will lead you in the growth of it.

Rev SS said...

I Love the way you articulate God's time ... which is not really "time" at all ... in the final analysis ... the "time" that's important is the present moment! (and our job is to be intentional in our stewardship of each moment) Right?

imngrace said...

Amen...and amen. I hear you.