Can You Extend the Open Hand?

Here’s a thought from AWAKENING THE QUIETER VIRTUES by Gregory Spencer (IVP) as you enjoy this Sunday evening and prepare for tomorrow’s Labor Day holiday here in the United States.

GENEROSITY OF TIME: A WAY TO THINK ABOUT PATIENCE. One of the louder virtues in American culture is efficiency.  It’s what makes the clock of capitalism tick.  We are remarkably skilled at getting things done, at thinking “yes we can” and then putting forth our best effort to accomplish many tasks in a short time.  Often efficiency serves us well.  But this way of valuing time can tick-tock into our world view, leading us to measure everything by the stop-watch.  Time: we march against it, beat, save it, mangage it, spend it and try not to kill it or waste it.  If efficiency becomes a dictator instead of a servant, generosity is usually oppressed.  We feel we must fill all of our days with industrious busyness.

When my daughters were young, I too frequently moaned how little time I could give to writing.  One friend said, ‘Your girls will only be toddlers once.  Don’t worry so much about being productive.’ Another friend gestured to my daughters and said, ‘Spence, here are your publications!’  …

For the most part, the test of the generosity of time is patience.  When it comes to time, can I extend the open hand (italics mine) ?  Don’t get me wrong, … efficiency [has its] place. … A more generous relationship to time says, “I wait for the LORD, my whole being waits, and in His word I put my hope.” (Psalm 130:5)”

Enjoy the holiday, enjoy your family and wait upon the LORD!

Peace and Joy!

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