Today’s society pushes for being busy at all times and at any costs We are run by the clock and live by the calendar. We are programmed early in life that to be late comes with a penalty. Because of this, people conclude that time is something that must be battled and beaten. It is our enemy.
Yet, nothing could be further from the truth. Time is not only not your enemy, it is your best friend because it motivates you to seek change and transformation.
Suppose you have a habit that needs to be changed and you delay making that change. A year from now you continue in this habit. What impact has that had on your life? Has it hurt your relationships? What has it cost you? Now take it out to three years. What have you lost or suffered? What has happened to your faith and hope? How much more insurmountable does this problem look now?
Time isn’t your enemy here. It isn’t out to hurt you. Time is giving you an opportunity to process through things and make the changes that you need to make in your life. Time has no agenda, but allows you whatever you need. Time is actually on your side.
Lauren Necko shares, “Time is a very powerful force in our reality. Essentially, it stops everything from happening all at once. It gives us spaces between events. It gives us purpose to build up motion, momentum. Without time, the process of our life would be immeasurable.”
In his message entitled “Starting Over” Andy Stanley recently talked about time being our friend and not our enemy and I cannot say it any better than he did. So, I will use his words to talk about it here and it you would like to hear his message in its entirety, click on the title.
“We say that time is ticking and I need to get on with it. Time is your friend and this is true in every arena where you are starting over and here’s why. When you’ve gone through something difficult, the truth is that you are out of balance. And before you make another life decision, you need to find balance.
Emotions are like a temperature….they go up and then they come down…..but oftentimes they do not come down as fast as they go up. You’re carrying a little anger. You’re carrying a little resentment. You’re carrying a little jealousy. You’re carrying stuff you don’t know about.
So, consequently, you’re a little bit off balance. You’re emotions are a little high. You’re still dealing with some pain. When you are in pain physically, you become very self-absorbed. When you’re in pain emotionally, you become very self-absorbed. It’s not your fault and you’re not even aware you are self-absorbed. It’s the nature of pain. We need people who will enter into our pain with us and let us tell our story over and over and over again. That’s just part of the healing process.
Self-absorbed people make self-absorbed decisions. You just do. You can’t help that. So, consequently, jumping into whatever is next before you’ve allowed the temperature to come down, before you’ve found your equilibrium, before you’ve found your balance is a dangerous thing.
When you are healthy, you have clarity. And when you have clarity, you make better decisions. Until you have clarity, you have no business making decisions. Time is your friend because with time comes clarity. And that takes time.
If you wait long enough, you will be able to hear things later on that you can’t hear now. There are some things you need to hear, but you can’t now and it’s not your fault. It’s just that you’re not ready to hear them. There are things you need to hear before you move on to whatever is next.
And not only are there things you need to hear a few weeks from now or a year from now, but there will be some people you’ll be able to hear a year from now that you’re not able to listen to today. There are some people who are trying to speak into your life right now and you just can’t hear them. It’s not that you don’t want to. You just can’t.
Time is your friend, but it feels like your enemy. The reason we rush is because we are convinced personally that our situation is different. Your circumstances may be unique, but you are not. Your challenges may see unique, but you are not. Your version of your story has been lived out before, but because you are emotional and you are feeling the pain, you’re just absorbed with it and you don’t even know it. You’re not in a position to make another decision.”
Consider the account in the Bible of widows Naomi and Ruth. What if Naomi had not spent those years in Moab grieving the deaths of her husband and both sons and had left immediately to go back to Bethlehem before the time frame that God had for her in His plans? We know that for at least 10 years she was in a very bad place emotionally and was very bitter. She was in that self-absorbed place of a widow steeped in deep, deep pain and grief.
When both of her sons died, Naomi no longer had anyone in their immediate family to provide for her. She’s at her weakest point. It’s at this place where she is finally able to “hear” God and allow Him to show her what to do. This is when she makes her move back to her homeland of Bethlehem with her widowed daughter-in-law Ruth. It is at this time that God has moved things into place for her and has readied the heart of her kinsman redeemer Boaz to step in to marry Ruth and provide a home for both of them for the rest of their lives. TIME was Naomi’s friend and that time period was literally years.
I can tell you from my own personal experience with some years of time now since the death of my husband that I can now see that time is my friend. At first I kept asking my psychologist when the grief and pain would stop. His reply was always, “What’s the rush?” For a very long time I didn’t understand that, but I ‘get it’ now.
It is taking me much time to work through all of my pain, emotions, and expectations. I have embraced my grief and allowed it to expose the deepest parts of my heart. This has enabled me to process through so many things and to deal with them in a healthy way. Time has become my friend.
What about you? Are you in a rush to stop the pain? Are you taking the time for yourself that you need to slow down or even stop for awhile and embrace grief? Consider this truth:
Time is your friend and not your enemy.