Thursday, March 3, 2011

On the issue of time...

It takes time to spin - to draft the roving, to let the spindle twist the fiber into thread, and enough thread to form a skein of yarn. My daughter spins. I don't - I never learned this art, but I love the times when she sits beside me, spindle in hand, fibers twisting through her fingers...
This week has been about time for me - it wasn't a plan, but a serendipitous spinning and twisting as my life passed through the fingers of the Holy Spirit! (You will have to come over again tomorrow for coffee and a sneak peek at what is on the art table...) And this "time journey" has been good - not necessarily new information, but deeper exploration of what I do know to be true...

that time is precious
that time is a gift
that time is a sacrifice
that time is something I must be a steward over.

I spent time (lots of it!) searching for the book in which I KNEW I had marked this quote by Annie Dillard, thinking I might make an inspiration piece out of it to remind me of the power of time: How we live our days...is how we live our lives."  (Found in Crazy Love by Francis Chan, page 165.)

A few days ago, I was playing with the word itself - making an acrostic out of it...
T - the
I - intimate
M - memories
E - experience

This one was specifically created as I considered the importance of the days I am spending with my dear daughter, and holding close to my heart intimate conversations that spontaneously erupt throughout the day. Or how about "To Interest My Energies".  Perhaps "terribly irrationally managing emotions" ("Just to let you know how it CAN be over here," said laughingly) Try it! It really is fun.


And then, of course, this little verse became a ticker tape in my mind:  making the most of your time, because the days are evil - Ephesians 5:16.  You know it, too, don't you!
I already knew that He was going to talk to me about the word "time" in the original language, right?  And "time" isn't just the 1a. nonspatial continuum in which events occur in apparently irreversible succession from the past through the present to the future or 1b. an interval separating two points on this continuum; a duration as defined in the free dictionary here  or the Merriam-Webster dictionary here.  It is the term "kairos" (in the Greek lexicon) which carries the weight of "the opportune time, season, the suitable time, the right moment".  Yes, we are to make the most of each opportunity, each moment, that comes our way! And "kairós" ("opportune time") is derived from kara ("head") referring to things "coming to a head" to take full-advantage of them.  Mmmmmmm, what a consideration, that each day, things are "coming to a head", becoming ripe, the right moment coming upon me!  Especially powerful when I think about how each day brings about such growth and change in our daughter...this is her "season".


Yet, He was twisting, spinning, an even stronger fiber into my being.  Depending on the translation one uses, the first part of the verse is rendered "making the most" or "redeeming" as well as a few less common variations.  It was here, that more power struck me.  I know what "redeem" means, don't I?  "To buy back from, to buy again" is the definition in my mind.  It is what Jesus did for me on the cross; He bought me back from the sin-life.

But something catches my attention while I am in the Lexicon..."redeem, ransom, έξαγοραζόμενοι" is made up of two words put together - ek and agorázō.  I love exploring a word to its roots, so off we go (because you are coming with me, right?)!

First, we'll go to ek: (a preposition) – properly, "out from and to" (the outcome); out from withinEk ("out of") is one of the most under-translated (and therefore mis-translated) Greek propositions – often being confined to the meaning "by." 1537 (ek) has a two-layered meaning ("out from and to") which makes it out-come oriented (out of the depths of the source and extending to its impact on the object).

Think about that...out of the depths of the source and extending to its impact on the object.  Wow!

On to agorázō: (from 58 /agorá, "the ancient marketplace, town-center") – properly, to make purchases in the marketplace ("agora"), i.e. as ownership transfers from seller to buyer.
59 /agorázō ("acquire by purchasing") stresses transfer – i.e. where something becomes another's belonging (possession).

For some reason, these words hit me harder than the familiar "redeem" or "ransom".   I am to regard time as MY belonging, MY possession.  I am to think of myself as
buying time out of the marketplace of 

randomness, 
world ownership,
other control 

and transfer it into:

my control
my stewardship
my opportune season
my sacrifice to Him. 

Out of the source of "this world" and into "His marvelous light" where the impact can be of greatest value and use to us who must walk through this continuum of events!


I need more ownership over this commodity of time...

Perhaps I have given it to Him too quickly in the past, before I have had a chance to savor it, experience it, feel it is mine.  King David once said that he would not sacrifice something that didn't cost him anything... Once I have tasted it as really mine, then, when I offer Him:

this time,
this day,
this season

it is truly possible to live in it together - His Spirit and mine spun around tightly so that the fiber won't separate when it is pulled upon by the toilsomeness of the day...

Linking up with other imperfects at Emily's Imperfect Prose

4 comments:

emily wierenga said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

cindy, i am always so afarid of wasting time... you have helped redeem the concept for me, to make me realize and i can take it captive and make it a gift of worship. so beautiful, artist friend. love to you. e.

Joybird said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

It's late and I found myself skimming the cream off of the top. I'm going to leave this open to read again tomorrow morning. Your post is rich enough to double dip. But I wanted to thank you now for sharing your exploration. I look forward to soaking it in.

Joybird said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Ok, I'm back and processing. Prior to rereading your post I read a passage in One Thousand Gifts that talked about slowing down and multiplying time through thankfulness. As I reread you an echo is wafting through the air. In this season of my life, God's primary gift to me is time, lots of quiet, free time. And I have become worried as this season stretches out longer than I expected (a larger gift) that I am wrong about this gift, that I "should" be job hunting, temping, pursuing a future, etc. I have also been impatient, longing for and planning the next season and resenting this one. Thirdly, I've been struggling to respond to the many who see my current gift as an opportunity for them to fill my time. You and Ann have presented a united message and I thank you. This time is a gift to be rejoiced in, stewarded, taken authority over, be used for worship and lovingly, gratefully sacrificed. I'm not sure how to do all of that but I am going to try.

Joybird said...Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Ok, I'm back and processing. Prior to rereading your post I read a passage in One Thousand Gifts that talked about slowing down and multiplying time through thankfulness. As I reread you an echo is wafting through the air. In this season of my life, God's primary gift to me is time, lots of quiet, free time. And I have become worried as this season stretches out longer than I expected (a larger gift) that I am wrong about this gift, that I "should" be job hunting, temping, pursuing a future, etc. I have also been impatient, longing for and planning the next season and resenting this one. Thirdly, I've been struggling to respond to the many who see my current gift as an opportunity for them to fill my time. You and Ann have presented a united message and I thank you. This time is a gift to be rejoiced in, stewarded, taken authority over, be used for worship and lovingly, gratefully sacrificed. I'm not sure how to do all of that but I am going to try.