Sunday, January 10, 2010

A Wrinkle in Time?

In her wonderful book 'A Wrinkle in Time' author Madeline L'Engle describes Space and Time as a large blanket and suggests that if you can scrunch the fabric together you could jump from wrinkle to wrinkle to get directly to wherever and whenever you wanted.

The Liturgical Church Calendar jumped through a wrinkle this week. Last Sunday was Epiphany - the celebration of the visit of the Wise Men to baby Jesus. This week is Baptism of the Lord Sunday - when we remember 30 yr old Jesus being baptized in the Jordan river by John. That's 30 yrs jumped in the blink of an eye. To be fair though the gospels themselves do go into hyper-drive jumping from the birth narratives to the baptism with one brief stopping point with 12yr old Jesus at the Temple wandering away and giving Mary and Joseph a few extra grey hairs - as if being charged with the responsibility of raising the Son of God wasn't enough to turn your hair grey overnight!

Given the gospel accounts we could be forgiven that Jesus' life was one roller-coaster ride of high adventure, of miracles and teachings. It only takes one sentence for Jesus to get to the next town - even though the walking journey may have taken weeks. All the books we read and the movies we watch seem to jump from adventure to adventure, even so called Reality T.V. has the boring moments edited out - though I did discover a channel once where you could watch the Big Brother house mates live - very boring from 11pm to about 7am when they were all asleep.

We like our reality sped up. We want to wrinkle through the boring sections to get to the next adventure. What I want to learn this year is to find the presence of God in the boring stuff of life and to realize none of life is truly boring if you are awake to it. In the play Our Town by Thornton Wilder, the character of Emily goes back in time after her death and experiences her 12th. birthday again. The memory is too painful for her and she says

"I can't. I can't go on. It goes so fast. We don't have time to look at one another....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?"

the Stage Manager responds

"No........The saints and poets, maybe - they do some."

Maybe if we slowed down and savored life we would be overwhelmed by all that life has to offer, and so we speed up our existence and close our eyes.....and miss the flowers on the path.

Maybe this year I'll take the long way round.

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