Keeping Time

Autumn is setting in now. You can taste it. That smell of nature putting on it's wooly jumper, the first leaves browning and dropping to the earth from where once they came. Crisper than a freshly cooked poppadum. There is something distinctly beautiful about autumn, the way that as the nights get shorter the feeling that hybernation is on it's way, making every dawn chorus all the more sweeter.

I love the way that God designed life to work in seasons, patterns, rhythms. The way that all of nature has a course that is set, and there is nothing we can say or do to take control of it. We may generate air conditioning for the summer or tanning booths to maintain a glow in winter, but for all our efforts nature continues on in it's slowly changing seasons, each giving hints of the next to come.

All of creation works on these cycles, the sabbath day for rest, winter to give life to spring, night to give way to day, meal times to revive, harvests to provide.

The temptation however is always to mess around with these seasons. These rhythms that God has set in us, we try to carry on as if they don't exist, or at least don't apply to ourselves. I have experienced this recently, that feeling of being out of sync with the beat that God has been setting. You feel it in your bones when it happens, your heart beats slightly faster, there is a slight jitter when you pick up your coffee cup, your temper feels slightly shorter, making those once little things feel bigger.

It's all too easy to slip out of time with the fathers rhythms, the world tells us to work harder, stay up later, get the earlier train. But that wasn't the way it was supposed to be. Right back at the beginning of creation, we had the rhythm instilled in us, work 6 days, rest 1. Take time to enjoy Gods presence, as Adam did when he walked with the Father in the garden. Rise with the sun, put the fields put to pasture, come together to eat and remember and to share in joy.

These patterns, rhythms, seasons, are instilled into life itself, why do we wonder then when we try and beat our own tempo that we feel stretched?

Oddly so much of the time it's is ourselves that cause us the most stress, yet we turn to "self help" for the answers. We seek for inner meaning, within ourselves yet we constantly define ourselves by others opinions. We search for enlightenment, not in simplicity, but under the crushing weight of understanding, learning and pursuit of wisdom. All in the grand scheme of finding a way to become more in control of our lives.

It seems to me that if we just started paying more attention to the clear rhythms that God has set for us, rather than constantly trying to beat our own, we would see a marked difference in how we see the world, our work and our relations with others. For all of these become strained when we try and Set our own pace.

It's like this. The greatest Orchestras in the world are made of hundreds of parts, The Philharmonic, the BBC Concert, The Sydney National, all of them, they have different players, parts, specialities. Hundreds of highly trained and skilled individuals at the top of their games. But what really makes the whole thing sing- is the conductor. You see without a great conductor at the front and centre of the stage, these orchestras will sound a mess. The conductor keeps time, he tells the different sections when to come in and when to rest. He makes sure that the ebb and flow of the piece is kept in check, and stops the different parts from running ahead of the pack.

It's like this with God. He helps us keep the time, tempo and rhythm of our lives on track so we don't get carried away with our own worlds and how this world tells us our lives should beat. Because it's all to easy to get off track, much like when the DJ doesn't quite get the mix right and two tempos don't quite blend together, it grates on us to hear it because we can feel it in our bones. We are made to detect rhythms and beats, because The Great Conductor ordered us to be that way.

If you are feeling like something isn't quite clicking. If life keeps throwing a bad mix at you, if all seems not quite in sync, like the orchestra is constantly playing a loop or never getting started in the first place, then listen up. Sometimes we just need to put down the sticks and stop drumming our own beat, and listen to the one who set the rhythm of the universe in motion, and keep time with Him.