Ordinary Time

time

I don’t know much about liturgy and all the festivals and feasts that some of the church denominations observe throughout the year. But I have been sitting in a pew long enough to know that there are some special times in the church year, like Advent and Epiphany and Lent and Pentecost.

I like the rhythm of seasonal celebrations. They provide a framework for certain kinds of devotional reading and reflecting. December is for entering into the Nativity, March or April for remembering the cross and the empty grave. But what about now? Is there any high and holy day we’re missing in July?

Since we are equidistance from both Easter and Christmas, I assumed there would be a special observance smack dab in between the big ones. Instead, I was intrigued to find that the part of the liturgical calendar we are currently in is called “Ordinary Time”.

Ordinary Time.

It turns out that this season is the longest, which seems fitting.

So many of our days are routine, unremarkable, commonplace.

Could Ordinary Days be the best days of all?

No gifts to buy, no decorations to create, no traditions to uphold.

No cut-out cookies, no chocolate bunnies, no hustle and bustle.

Instead,

a day to wake up and walk in the early morning air,

a day to make some sandwiches and wash some dishes,

a day to pull some weeds and arrange some flowers,

a day to love some people and serve some brothers and sisters,

a day to laugh or cry or wait or move,

a day to lift my eyes and and listen for trumpet sound —

that’s an ordinary day in Ordinary Time that becomes extraordinary.

Happy Ordinary Time, my friends!

Celebrate this extraordinary day!

ordinary

Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering.  Romans 12:1, The Message

It’s Time

FullSizeRender

Sometime this summer, this old clock stopped ticking.

Actually, it’s not an old clock.  It’s a $5.99 clock from Ikea.

I remember the day it happened.

One of my grands dipped it in the bathtub until the 5, 6, and 7 were drowning.

I dried it off and set it back on my desk, but the ticker was silent.

IMG_1474

I guess you could say that sometime this summer, I kinda stopped ticking, too.

I don’t know when it happened.

Maybe I was drowning in funerals (5) and weddings (6) and fun activities (at least 7).

I allowed myself to be silent for awhile.

Today I picked up that clock, wiped off the soap scum, twirled those hands around, and gave it a shake.

 The ticking returned! The rhythm is back!

My clock came back to life!

So I figure it’s telling me to do the same —

dust off the dander, limber up my hands, and breath some life back into small drop.

May the click of ideas and the rhythm of words return.

It’s time.

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.”  Ecclesiastes 3:1

The Gift of an Hour

My times are in your hands.  Psalm 31:15

Today is my favorite day of the year! No, really! Today marks the end of Daylight Savings Time. There’s something lovely about getting an extra hour to use however you want. There’s something powerful about taking the minute hand and sweeping it backwards, defying time itself. There’s something magical about being given the gift of an hour. How shall it be spent?

I like this day because it’s not a holiday, so there is no hype, no advertising, no gift buying. The mail is still delivered, the grocery store is open, everything carries on as usual. But all day long I am aware that there is a bonus built into this one day. I feel a real sense of anticipation as I search for appropriately worthy ways to fill this space of time. Sometimes I read, sometimes I pray, sometimes I sleep. Tonight, I write.

Is it possible that every hour is such a gift?