Keeping Time

11 Mar

“One of the ways the telegraph changed us as humans was it gave us a new sense of what time it is. It gave us an understanding of simultaneity. It gave us the ability to synchronize clocks from one place to another. It made it possible for the world to have standard time and time zones and then Daylight Savings Time and then after that jetlag. All of that is due to the telegraph because, before that, the time was whatever it was wherever you were.”  ~ James Gleick

There is a great deal about our lives that we attempt to control. We are masters at the art of manipulation. We learn all of that from a very early age. The baby learns that a well-placed cry or scream will get a certain response and it uses those cries and screams to the best advantage possible. We practice what we have learned throughout our lives, all for the sake of managing our lives and the environment in which we live.

Today is definitely one of the products of that attempt: Daylight Savings Time. A long time ago, it was begun to save energy and make better use of daylight. Better hours were spent in the fields for farming. Less energy was used to light a home. The examples are numerous. In today’s world, it does not seem to be as needed and, indeed, many people are trying to do away with it.

If you think about it, we are in a similar situation in the Church, are we not? We are, if you will, in Lenten Savings Time. Lent is a season of grace and holiness. It is a season given to us to make us better, wiser, and smarter in the things that we do in our faith. Used properly, Lent helps us to grow closer to God so that, when we shift gears at Easter, the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ is filled with that much more glory and joy.

We can grumble about Daylight Savings Time — believe me, I sure do.  I have the early Masses this weekend, which means that the hour of sleep that I lost made the 6:30 a.m. Mass feel like 5:30 a.m. — but, after a while, we become accommodated to the change in time and move along as if nothing has happened. Then, when fall arrives and Daylight Savings Time ends, we luxuriate in that extra hour of sleep, our reward.

We do all that we can this season of Lent to draw closer to God. At first, it may knock us off base. We might feel a bit out of sorts. But then, we get into the swing of things and luxuriate in the celebration of Easter. Imagine what we will feel like when we get to luxuriate in the celebration of eternity with God!

FAITH ACTION:  “Spring ahead” with joyful anticipation of what waits for us at the finish.