For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:1 ESV
On Friday’s we usually review spiritual formation as it pertains to our stuff: our time, our money, our resources. Part of being our spiritual formation involves managing and investing the time, money and other stuff God has given to us. A big part of our spiritual formation then requires us to become better time managers (I highly recommend What’s Best Next as a start on time management), and most of time management involves getting more done within the time God has given us. Generally speaking this is a sound Biblical principle. However, I write this post as I prepare for vacation. And Solomon reminds us there is a time for everything. In light of vacation, that means there is a time to not keep time.
For type-A people like myself, this is a hard spiritual truth to grasp. To think that on some level, at some times, God wants us to turn off our clocks and just live seems unthinkable. (I realize for some of you, this is how you live everyday….you need to grow disciplined, and most of the other posts will be for you :-)). Regardless, taking time where we don’t pay attention to time is important in our spiritual development. Ideally we should do this every Sabbath (one day a week). Then throughout the year, we should set aside full weeks to do this. Did you know God commanded the Hebrews to take three weeks off a year? One week was a mandatory camping trip (see Leviticus 23:33-43), but I digress.
Because my parents and my in-laws live in the deep south, our “vacation” this year is really running the triangle to both sets of my kids grandparents. While it’s not as nice as a cruise or trip to the Caribbean, it will be ten days where I won’t pay attention to rise times, bed times, work times or really any other times. Instead, I’ll try to simply “be” and embrace God as I meet Him. Perhaps I grow so structured (including with the time of my daily devotions) that I don’t have the “time” to just enjoy God. That’s the point of taking time to not keep time…a fun part of our spiritual formation.