The Passage of Time
It’s amazing isn’t it how some days seem to fly by, but some days drag on? When you’re alone in isolation the clicking of that clock can seem slow, barely moving at all it seems. The perception concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.” It’s hard for us puny humans to except that time is both linear and perceptive.
When time is so finite how do we manage it? When life is going great and wonderful what are we doing with the time we are given? When life is terrible and full of sorrow, how are we managing it? I myself sit at home and often feel low and down about my situation. Spending much of my time in non-voluntary solitude, I find that as long as I am using my time wisely, as long as I’m still doing God’s work, I can emotionally manage the struggle. Ecclesiastes 3:11 “He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.” We are always so worried about getting stuff done, so worried about not having enough time to do everything in a day.
Have you ever thought about what happens when time runs out? Have you ever thought about when our time is up on this Earth, have we completed everything we wanted, have we live like we wanted too, have we seen the world, or did we squander the most precious gift we have, life/time. There have been many times in my life when I saw time slip by me, as the day should have turned into a forever sleep, but by the grace of God, time didn’t catch up to me on those days.
Some people are afraid of time. Some people are afraid to get older, but it’s been my experience that most of the time people who age also grow in wisdom. In many cultures to live to old age is to become a village elder. We should understand that time can be a friend. We often want time to go by more slowly, or more quickly, but what if we actually got to the point in our lives that we embraced exactly what time was for us because it’s God’s plan. James 4:14 “Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.” We cannot worry about tomorrow for time is fleeting. Time is not always a friend to us when we are alone, and scared. Rejoice in the great times we have. Proverbs 27:1 “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.”
When we have companionship it seems time goes by so quick. The joy we have not being alone, being with someone we love, being loved in return. When that time has passed however, the time alone seems so long indeed. Being with someone for 10 years, then that time is gone, 7 months feels and seems like an eternity. The Lord teaches us patience, but it’s difficult. The nights feel like ages, reaching for someone that doesn’t exist anymore. The time it takes to recover from heartbreak is different for everyone, but how that time is spent is distinctive to each person. As for me in the past I’ve had friends to get me out of the house, take me out, introduce me to new people. This time however has not gone smoothly. 7 months I’m told is not a long time. How do they come up with that? How does someone assume to know what is or is not a long time for you? The perception of the passage of time largely depends on how we feel about the moment. There’s a difference between being okay alone, and wanting to be. There’s also a big difference in being single, and being alone. Most people have a vast number of friends there for them to get them out of the house, to help them heal. What if you don’t have that? What is 48 hours in isolation verses 48 hours of parties? When someone tells you their weekends went by too fast, do you judge them on their passage of time? When someone spends 48 hours in a cell for 48 hours do you tell him or her it’s not that long? Who are we to judge how someone should feel? Who are we to tell someone how much time should pass for them to be okay? Before you judge someone, before you pass advice, perhaps you should take the time and ask how they feel, get to know their perception, and try to walk a mile in their shoes. Maybe that mile might seem longer when you try to understand. It’s best to have compassion. Have a little companion for the suffering of others. Understand that sometimes the hurt goes deeper then you may know. Pain is a tricky thing, and the amount of time it takes for that pain to go away even the shortest of times to ‘you’ could be an eternity for someone else. Don’t judge what you don’t fully understand.
We may sit in isolation, or sit in a group of friends. No matter the situation and how uncomfortable or enjoyable it may be, know that God is in control and we are precisely where we need to be. Have faith always.