How long will time bedevil us? Everyone agrees that time is a gift, but we treat it as a burden. Timelines have deadlines. Or we see time as a commodity in short supply. So we track it, multitask it, try to stretch it, and race against it. Time is always fleeting, always urgent, which means we’ll savor time when we have time off.
Then we’ll regret that we wasted time.
Modern readings of an ancient text, Ephesians 5:16, seem to underscore our predicament. “These are evil times, so make every minute count” (CEV). We should be “making the most of every opportunity” (NIV). Therefore, “Make the best use of your time” (Phillips) and “Don’t waste your time on useless work” (The Message).
Wow, we are so hooked into time that even our “wisdom” keeps us on the clock.
And then there is this: “Redeem the time” (Markus Barth). Now that’s something entirely different. That sounds like a relationship with time. A project on behalf of time. A reappraisal and recreation of time for our time.
Leaders, can we let go of time as it is feared and fought and find instead a gift that is enough?
Let us bless the time. Let our passions kindle the moments. Let our practices mark the hours. Let our gratitude settle on the days.