Monday, February 29, 2016

Extra Time

Friends of Faith:
Everyone I know wishes for more time. More time with our spouses, more time with our families and friends, more time to get one more thing finished on our list. Even more time for God.
This is February 29th, a Leap Year. Today IS an “extra day.” What will I do with my “extra time?”

I do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea, and all of them were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. All ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they drank from a spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was the Christ. Yet God was not pleased with most of them, for they were struck down in the desert.
These things happened as examples for us, so that we might not desire evil things, as they did. Do not grumble as some of them did, and suffered death by the destroyer. These things happened to them as an example, and they have been written down as a warning to us, upon whom the end of the ages has come. Therefore, whoever thinks he is standing secure should take care not to fall. 1 Cor 10: 1-6, 10-12
As St. Paul recalls, God gave everyone the same baptism, a Baptism that gave us each grace. Grace to do God’s will.

God also gives everyone a second chance, just as he did the Israelites coming out of Egypt in the Exodus.
And God gives us all time. Extra time, because no time is really ours, time does not belong to the creature, but to the creator. All time is really Gods. And St. Paul reminds us in this passage that we are not secure if we don’t take good care of our time by being truly IN God’s time.

As baptized Christians our most “inner being” isn’t what tempts us to desire “evil” things. Yet, in fact, we know that there is much evil in this world.
Nor is it grace that allows us to choose to not use our time wisely or as God wills.

In fact, as baptized Christians our most “inner being” has and knows a desire to be fulfilled by God, to know God, to love God (and his creation), and to bring others to know him. St. Augustine wrote: “Thou hast made us for thyself O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds rest in thee.” So whether those desires are staring us in our face, or have been pushed as far back as we can, the desire, the grace to become holy is deep inside.
And this same grace is a grace that allows me to know that I want to spend my time doing whatever God wants me to do for myself and for others. But making those decisions and managing my time is difficult – because I am human – because God gave me the free will to make my own choices and because God allows there to be both His choice and the opportunity to choose something other than His choice.

God gives us all time—because God made all time. Every millisecond is a time to make God a habit. And each second, each hour, each day – TODAY – we are important to him.
Everyone fills their time with something. Everyone is busy, or gives the impression that they are busy doing something. So this is about what I am doing with MY time, how I am justifying MY time.

Am I really too busy today, or am I just putting it off until tomorrow; am I hiding behind other “jobs and duties,” too busy to see or to want to know, how God is calling me; or am I too busy doing what I think of as God’s work and missing what God is actually wanting me to do? Or am I so busy doing good things, but like those wandering in the desert so long ago, grumbling about the things that go wrong, the people that don’t appear to be doing “anything” to help or wishing that had more time to do what I selfishly want to do for myself?
God’s desire for my time is quite simple. It is for me to spend that time to know him (study, seek the truth); to love him (spend time with him); and to serve him (by being a servant to others, no matter how difficult that job may be.)

Yet, how will I spend my “extra time?”

In many ways my answer to God’s call, what I do at times other than the hour I spend at Sunday mass, reflects what are my truest priorities—whether it is what my heart desires or not. Those “free” minutes, the unscheduled hours that I spend  grumbling or gossiping, being tuned into TV, Facebook, or email, or really anytime that I am doing what I want rather than doing what God is asking of me tells God who I am, what I value and how important He truly is to me.
There is no time like the present time! There is no time like this extra day in a normal year. There is no time better than now to read and study God’s scripture,  Church teachings, and early church fathers like St. Augustine, to become a servant (yes this may mean doing something difficult, or not in my comfort zone), or to sit quietly and answer the yearning in my heart to be in God’s presence.

Heavenly Father, You call me to know you, to love you, and to serve you TODAY. Help me to seek Your grace, to serve Your people, and to know the truth. Thank you for this extra day to remind me that every day I have to be with you is “extra.” Amen.
Make today “extra” special for God – and for someone else in your life as well,

No comments:

Post a Comment