Time

I don’t run from myself.  I don’t wish to be someone else.  I don’t spend time trying to be other people, but the guy in my mirror keeps changing.  His glasses have changed, and he is more nearsighted.  Liver spots.  Even when frozen off, tend to find new spaces on his face.  He is getting older, but the guy in my head still talks and sounds at most 30ish.

And yet, the Christian scriptures describe God as the same yesterday, today, and forever.  Timeless.  Not subject to the ravages of time.  Hmmm.

Just sitting here, I am replacing myself.  Cell for cell, and not quite replacing each cell as wondrously as I did in my first few years of life.

I now own five toilets in three buildings.  All functioning again after yesterday’s work by Paul.  No, all five flushing again after the nice plumber came out for four hours today.  He said tree roots don’t mind “gray” water, but they don’t help toilets to flush without sending relics into showers.  My wife hates relics.   Wait, the one in the guest end of the house sounds like a small machine gun when filling, and rattles pipes in the kitchen.  So, after one more servicing, they will all be maintained.  Not improved.  Just maintained.

And yet, for forty years the Israelites making an extended, generation-wiping detour in the desert never had shoes or tents, or clothes wearing out.  Timeless.

I have pains that take longer to heal.  Some never will.  I didn’t make life choices to bring pain, I thought.

And yet, heaven supposedly tolerates neither pain nor tears.

In the last 2,000 years, we’ve left nothing unchanged, unedited: governmental forms, trade, technologies, medicine, science.  Many changes are wondrous.  Some bring bad effects.

And yet, no one has said anything as lasting, as improbable, as heart-stoppingly hopeful as a carpenter-cum-late-blooming rabbi that authorities unsuccessfully rubbed out.

Did you ever feel as if time does not make sense?  As if time itself is somehow not right?

It could be that our weirdest acceptance of the incongruous is that we take time for granted, as the given.

When it is not.

 

Seconds

I sat on the porch for just a few minutes, sun streaming through trees straining to bud so early, so early in spring.  I could barely sit still for five minutes.

I had already stormed in my head and heart at 2:25 p.m.  I stormed loudly making Jill endure me, because I was slow on the day, slow to meet deadlines, slow all week, the computer was refusing to let me do advanced things in a program, and today, these hours of time I might have purchased in the shop working on an armoire, or out biking, or working outside and breathing for the first time in a couple of weeks.  These hours.

Were evaporating.  Were evanescent reminders.  Someone is near death.  Other people accomplishing more than me in the same number of years; or less.  All of it stirring, turning inside to whisper that the time screams silently by, and it bears a new, unasked whisper, “You have not, and may not accomplish all you had hoped.”

On great days, that refrain comes and enriches my relationships with people I love, projects I have nurtured, and need to complete.  I pine for some folks, and play in my head with projects to complete them.  Today, it just churned.  It made of my soul a little foment.

It made me wonder if James, half brother of Jesus, was churning or pining when he penned, “your life is a vapor (I always think of it on a still lake) gone with the rising sun.”

Now, should I go to bed early or go out into the shop and do things to wood that I can see when I am finished?

Do I take my seconds to bed, or go serve myself a second helping of today?