The calendar is relentless as it flips day by day, month by month, and year by year. Today, a wall calendar can hardly manage our days, now dissected into minute-by-minute increments of appointments, obligations, gatherings, necessities, events. It is at this time of the year that we often evaluate our habits and attempt to make corrections and additions to our lives to increase our effectiveness and efficiency.
We can become enslaved to our calendars and watches, prisoners of our own making, moving from one obligation to the next; scratching off one appointment just in time to make the next (hopefully “on time”). Is this what our lives are about? Counting time? Marking days? Accumulating years?
There is a chronological time (GK, chronos), marked by the face of a clock that counts out our seconds, minutes, and hours. But we know that age is not the only or even best measure of maturity or of time well spent. There is another measure of time that the Greeks referred to as kairos. This was time or a season pregnant with possibility. This was time not so much measured but time attended to; time where we were fully present to the fullness of the Presence.
As we move into a new calendar year, may we mark our time not as something to be managed but as a type of kairos to be aware of. May we make it our prayer to enter the moments of our days fully present to our spouses, families, neighbors, and our God.
“…in the fullness of time (kairos)” [Galatians 4.4]