on time.

I’ve been thinking a lot about time these days – how I perceive it, how I feel about it. Is that something you think about? I have a hunch that a lot of us do, that it’s one of the running tracks ever-playing in the backs of our minds. Maybe it’s the fact that it never goes away, which leads to the fact that we must orient ourselves to it to dwell in a society, have relationships, earn an income. Maybe it’s the fact that we don’t know what to do with it, whether it seems abundant or whether it seems scarce. Maybe it’s that we’ve heard over and over again to “redeem” the time, and we’re just not always sure what that means, because the season has changed, or life has become more complicated, or careers or tiny little people absorb so many of our hours that redemption just sounds like too much effort, and we wouldn’t really even know how to do that anyway.
Time can seem like quite an elusive concept to me. This week, I thought I would be home every evening. I thought our patterns would remain relatively consistent. I thought I would work on certain projects and accomplish certain tasks, that my children would reap the benefits of a rhythmic schedule. Instead, I called a doctor Monday morning, got in a car Monday night, went to a hospital Tuesday morning, and since then I have shifted a fidgeting, uncomfortable baby from hip to hip more times than I can count. This wasn’t the plan, time. Didn’t you know that? Who do you think you are?

This is what I’m saying. We have BIG FEELINGS about time. And I want to know what your feelings are. Will you tell me? I think this is a conversation that stands to benefit each of us greatly. It is certainly a topic that touches each of us, every second, in more ways than we generally notice. Comment here, on Facebook or on Instagram and let me know.


Time Question (2)

Author: Abby Perry

Abby has written for The Gospel Coalition, Christ and Pop Culture, Upwrite Magazine, and The Influence Network. She is the communications coordinator for a nonprofit organization and co-facilitates two community efforts—one promoting bridge-building racial reconciliation conversations and one supporting area foster and adoptive families. Abby graduated from Texas A&M University and currently attends Dallas Theological Seminary. She and her family live in College Station, Texas.

3 thoughts on “on time.”

  1. I have been very sick, sometimes unable to get out of bed, sometimes a little better than that since July. Two thoughts have been increasingly present with me during this time:

    “Tomorrow can and probably will be different, better or worse, than today. Better is more likely if I do what is for me to do now”


    “Long is not forever”

    What you were saying about wanting time to go according to our plan, I resonate with that. I really struggled with being sick until I found someone who thinks they understand what I have and thinks they can help me, mostly because even a wibbly-wobbly likely end date with some understanding is so much better than no clue and no end in sight. I wanted to have at least a rough sketch of the future, and I was in a very dark place until Jesus gave me someone who could shine the light of understanding.

    The strange bit is how my now has changed. At one point I thought I was going to get the news that I had a lifelong, progressive, genetic autoimmune disorder (spoiler: I don’t). About a week before the appointment, I was overwhelmed by this deep sense of wild and enthusiastic gratitude for what I do have right now. I had never before been so thankful for the ability to put a few dishes in the dishwasher, to change a poopy diaper, to go on a walk. Now is great because of what is given for now and the gifts we have been given to meet the it, pleasant or not. Tomorrow is great because it is a wild, unknown thing. The dance of unknown and known, that is the very heart of romance.

    1. This is so beautiful, Aria. Thank you for pressing into Jesus in the deep places and for sharing what the Spirit has shown you.

  2. Oh, girl. I can tell you that my thoughts of time have changed drastically since becoming a wife and mother. It’s funny how when you give yourself to these other people (even whom you love dearly), your time is fought over, taken away, and held with a clenched fist.

    I receive love in the form of quality time so you can imagine this real struggle I have when expectations aren’t met from my beloved husband or even from my children, for that matter.

    This last pregnancy with Rosemary being sick for the entire 9 months, I couldn’t as much as I tried, enjoy my time carrying her, and just waiting/begging for the time in my pregnancy that I would feel energized and overjoyed. It never came, and I was so let down. Time was dragging on and I couldn’t do anything about it but lay in bed and pray, “Lord, help me.” The nursery wasn’t done, the newborn clothes weren’t washed, the home improvement to-do list wasn’t even touched. Not to mention that all of my expectations and desires of how I would spend my time with the boys and Tony before baby #3 came went out the window. And then she came with a sigh of relief. But then two hours after she was born, we straight to the NICU, and now the last month battling (a milder case of) RSV. It’s not what I had at all pictured or wanted our life to be like this last year. After all, who wants messy and scary and hard? But was it worth it? Yes, and yes again. Was God good through it all? Absolutely.

    As a culture, we struggle with time. And in fact, I think it’s odd, confusing, and very contradicting. We are to work hard to be at the top, but yet show enough presence in the world on social media, and be active in the lives around us. Someone tell me how to do that well! 😉 How much time to give and how much time to savor? As a wife/mother in ministry, I wrestle with the concept daily. What does it look like to devote your life to Christ’s church and His work? What does it look like to devote your time to your husband and children? I’m sure there’s not a one, right answer. But I pray for the wisdom to lead a life that reflects my devotion to Christ and the gold of life.

    Abby, I’m thankful for you and your writings. You challenge and inspire me with everything that comes from you. You are loved dearly!

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