Have you ever caught yourself saying or thinking, “Where has the time gone?” As I was preparing to write to you, this very thought came to mind; it just seemed to me that I was writing my message to you for June and now it is August!
In reality, it is not that time has picked up speed in the physical world, but that we have been busy and occupied with many different things and thus, it just seems that life and time is moving more quickly. Nevertheless, it is still summer and the weather is nicer and perhaps we still have some days of vacation to enjoy this month, but we do have the time to reflect on and examine our lives of prayer and good works. Hopefully, we have not been so busy that these two essentials of our faith have slipped a bit (or even been skipped) because we were too busy or too tired.
One of the temptations we may face at this time of year is to take just a little break from our regular routine of daily prayer and works of mercy. As we all know, this can be a very subtle temptation. It is not one that leads us to stop or quit praying or to stop or quit being charitable altogether. Instead, it is the temptation to just “cut corners” a little—to not say and do as much as we want (or need) to do and just do a little less.
If we are not aware of this and vigilant about not giving in to this temptation, we can fall into the bad habit of not doing as much as we can each day to pray and to extend ourselves to others in whatever ways we are able. It can even seem to us that we have a good reason to do less once in a while (such as being too tired or too busy). We can tell ourselves that we will get back to our regular prayer and practices of charity “tomorrow.” However, how often do we do that?
My point is that the time is neither passing more quickly or more slowly for us. Perhaps we are not paying close enough attention to the time in our daily lives and realizing that time itself is part of God’s gift of life to each of us. As we believe that we come from Him and that we belong to Him, so does our time and, therefore, we cannot waste this gift by thinking that it is passing more quickly or more slowly than we would like. We do not have time to waste because like us, our time belongs to God.
So, whatever the time or season of our lives may be, we should be consoled by the fact that we are living on God’s time. Then, we can make the very best of it. By being faithful to our daily prayer, receiving the sacraments of the Holy Eucharist and reconciliation very regularly, by practicing some acts of penance, and by not lessening our spiritual and corporal good works, we spend the time of our lives—God’s time—well and fruitfully. All of us can and ought to do this. After all, this is how we cultivate our first vocation to holiness.
Please enjoy the rest of this summer and keep up the good work of spending the time of your life the way God wants you to. Let us all continue to pray for one another!
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