Do you ever wish that you could turn back time? Actually, it is a feat I achieved last week thanks to the International Date Line! Travelling from New Zealand to the States, I arrived in the States before I had actually left New Zealand! Bonus! Of course on my return I then lost a day. The wonders of time zones eh!
But I am sure like me, there are times in your life when you would love to be able to rewind the clock. To make a different decision, to not say something or do something that you later regretted. Hindsight often gives us greater clarity! I’d love that when it comes to selecting which supermarket queue to join as it seems I always choose the one on a go slow.
We’ve all said or done things that we have regretted. And the enemy just loves to capitalise on that. To burden us with guilt and condemnation. To harass our minds and remove our peace. To make us feel that God is no longer for us and that the sin has created an impenetrable barrier between us and God. But God, ever the all loving Father and Redeemer, has in place this wonderful thing called forgiveness. Through Jesus taking upon Himself all our sin (past, present and future!) we can be forgiven and reconciled with God. Sin is not an impenetrable barrier.
I love how in the Anglican Liturgy, every Sunday we would bow to our knees and ask forgiveness for all our sins. I love how God remembers them no more – that we are redeemed and set free from sin. How, through the blood of Jesus, God sees us in our finished state, unblemished and forgiven. In a way, God turns back time for us – He removes our sin from the timeline of our lives.
we have sinned
in what we have thought and said,
in the wrong we have done
and in the good we have not done.
We have sinned in ignorance:
we have sinned in weakness:
we have sinned through our own deliberate fault.
We are truly sorry.
We repent and turn to you.
Forgive us, for our Saviour Christ’s sake,
and renew our lives to the glory of your name.”
“He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.” (Psalm 103:12)
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins1 and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)
I don’t wear a watch. I use the clock on my phone but that seems to be losing time. I know the clock in my car is fast, but I keep forgetting by how much. And I’m not sure what time the one in the kitchen is keeping to. So when it came to collect the boys from school today I had no idea whether I was early / late / right on time. Looking back I realise this has been going on for sometime. It’s why I think I’m running late to work but arrive at work and realise I am actually early. With appointments to make, a schedule to keep, it’s not wonder I’ve been getting a little flustered. And yes I need to wear a watch that tells accurate time! Hmm note to self – get that replacement battery for it!
Time. We only have a limited amount each day. Certainly not enough to fritter away worrying about what time it actually is! Seconds turn into minutes. Minutes turn into hours, and hours into days. And there we have it – “like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives.” That sounds rather melodramatic, even a little soap operish…! But time is precious and passes whether we are watching the clock or not.
It may be obvious to quote Ecclesiastes 3:1 but it does say it in a nutshell – “There is a time for everything, and a season for everything under the Heavens.” To make the most of our days, to make the most of our times is to be aware of the season that we are in. It can be a season of pouring out and stepping up, a season of going wide, but just as easily it can be a season of sabbatical, of going deep. Our life will be a beautiful compilation of both. In following the Shepherd, we will find that He takes us on such a journey. We go through the valleys and the right paths, but He also takes us alongside quiet waters and green pastures. By being in tune with Him, by having Jesus to set the rhythm of our lives, we will find ourselves in the right season.
By the way, I should have known better. I was early to the school pickup. No matter, there’s a café right where I park the car. I’m taking that as a God ordained time out!