I’ve said it before and now I’m going to say it again because it’s been on my mind again.
And what I’ve said is this: it goes so fast.
Life goes by so fast.
I mean, I can’t believe that it’s already June. Yesterday was New Year’s Eve, wasn’t it, and the day before that last June? Where did the time go?
Many years ago, someone warned me that the older you get, the faster time goes. I didn’t
believe them then, but I do now. A week ago Kitty and I were married; a few weeks from now we’ll celebrate our 51st anniversary. Just last month our daughters were 9 and 6; suddenly, they will be 48 and 45. the day before yesterday our grandchildren were born; tomorrow they will graduate from high
school. A few days ago I was 30; in a few months I’ll be 73. When I was in high school, Monday meant Friday was an eternity away; now, it’s Friday before I know it. Sometimes I try to slow the weeks down, but it doesn’t do any good — they go whipping by and January becomes June. Or is it already July?
In Thornton Wilder’s play, Our Town, a young girl who has died returns from the grave to relive one day. But as she sees how everyone lives, how they really don’t notice each other or all that there is in a day, it becomes too painful and she says, “I can’t. I can’t go on. We don’t have time to look at each other. We saw all that was going on and never noticed. Take me back — up the hill — to my grave. But first: Wait! One more look. Good-bye world. Good-bye Grover’s Corners … Mama and Papa. Good-bye to clocks ticking and Mama’s sunflowers, and food and coffee, and new-ironed dresses and hot baths and sleeping and waking up. Oh, Earth, you’re too wonderful for anybody to realize you. Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it - every, every minute?”
And do we?
We see but do not see, not really. We don’t even have time to look at each other. Often we do not realize the wonderfulness of a day, the earth, life itself — the little gifts and smells and everyday
things. We miss so much.
So, what are we to do? Well, we can’t slow time down, but we can slow down and keep our eyes open each day. Someone has said that faith is exactly that: “… it is the decision to keep our eyes open.” Another author has said, “God is not absent: people just go blind.” And one thing this can mean is that often we go blind to everything but ourselves, get so absorbed or lost in ourselves that we do not see the very things that can put life and hope into us. To keep our eyes open to what is beyond us, to really look — at what is there, at each other — is to see something of God’s love and life-giving power, something of God’s healing and mending power at work. It is to see the miracle and mystery of life and discover hope, even joy. It is to learn to live fully each day and not miss a thing.
But if you’re anything like me and let days slip by and bank on having tomorrow, then I suggest you start noticing right away. Because after all, it’s already June, which means Christmas is the day after tomorrow.
God be with you,