A long time ago, I read a discourse written by a priest on the subject of “time and eternity.” I was 3 years past my divorce, single, and really trying to figure out what I was supposed to be doing with my life. And then I picked up this little booklet that packed such a spiritual punch so powerful, it would send me into a state of complete spiritual arousal.
The reality of “time and eternity” is one that few people these days choose to contemplate, because we are so distracted. Technology and entertainment have become the things people chase when they are not fulfilling their obligations and taking care of their responsibilities. Technology and entertainment are not inherently wrong. We all need to relax. But relaxation should be more than a game, a movie, an hour on the internet. Your life needs far more meaning than that, which is why it’s important to contemplate the significance of time and eternity.
It is a heavy subject. Death is certain, so what are you doing in the meantime? Contemplating this compels you to dig deep into your heart and really identify how connected your day-to-day actions are with your desire to reach heaven when you die. It means every moment of your life should possess a meaning, a purpose. It made me think of all the time I spent laying on the couch watching movies. Or all the time I spent infront of the mirror doing my hair and makeup. All the time I spend day-dreaming or surfing the internet. Yikes!
But even more significant for me was the recognition that, as a single person, I was waiting… and waiting, and waiting for something great to happen, some significant other to come into my life, some incredible even to happen. And all the while I was not paying attention to the moments I was living day to day. There was little significance attached to them. I seemed to be simply biding my time waiting for the big event. That spectacular moment I would one day tell my kids and my grandkids about. In the meantime, all these moments in my life were practically wasted.
It wasn’t that I didn’t appreciate the gift of my time, it was just that I didn’t appreciate the gift of my time, you know what I mean? I woke up each morning and thanked God for a new day, a clean slate, but then I was off and running in the rat race. I didn’t take into account that my eternity hinged upon these moments, these hours, all these days and weeks that were rapidly passing away. It took this little booklet to wake me up and realize I was letting the present slip by without acknowledging the great gift that was given to me. Time.
In the Gospel of Matthew (Mt. 25: 14-30), we hear Jesus talk about the parable of the talents and how each one of us are given these gifts and expected to use them wisely, to capitalize on them and use them for the good of others. And the gift of time, as you know, needs to be used wisely so when you enter into eternity, your reward is heaven. Life with Christ forever. No more sadness, no more tears, no more loneliness and longing. He will wipe it all away.
This is my reflection as we begin the first week in Ordinary Time. The celebrations of Christmas are over and Lent is on the horizon, but for the next month or so, it’s just “ordinary” time. So I would like to invite you to reflect on your moments, your hours, your days and weeks and encourage you to live them to the fullest because each one of them are gifts from God to you, whether you’re single or not.
Don’t let one single moment slip by without acknowledging the gift God has given you, and then use it for the good somehow.
- Use a painful memory as a prayer for the one who’s hurt you.
- Use boredom as an opportunity to serve someone else.
- Use breaktime at work to cheer someone up.
- Use your down-time to really reflect upon God, your life, and what you want your eternity to be.
- Don’t delay that idea for doing something great any more. God put that idea in your head for a reason. Invest that talent!
The options are endless!
Count on my prayers for you and please remember to pray for me, too. I’m always available at firstname.lastname@example.org.